Campaign conversations: Tate Reeves talks his journey to Governor

The Republican says creating jobs that will keep young people in the state is a top priority

JACKSON, Miss. (WCBI) – Governor Tate Reeves began his political career 20 years ago when he was elected state treasurer. He was the youngest state treasurer in the country and the first Republican to hold that office in Mississippi. For Reeves, it was a matter of fiscal responsibility.

“My background is in economics and finance. The last time we had a Democrat governor was Ronnie Musgrove.  They had spent and spent our state, much like Democrats in Washington DC. We had a $720 million budget shortfall on what was then a $3.6 billion budget, we turned it around, to having worst budget, to collected billions of dollars more,” Reeves said.

Reeves served two terms as lieutenant governor, before being elected to the state’s top office in 2019. He believes the number one challenge facing the state is attracting more high-paying jobs.

“We brought the largest economic development project to Golden Triangle, but the most important thing about that project is they’re paying almost 100 thousand dollars a year, it’s about training the workforce to do the jobs of the next fifty years and driving per capita incomes up for every Mississippian,” Reeves said.

The 49-year-old is married to Elee Reeves and they have three daughters. Reeves said it takes a lot of work to balance family life, a campaign, and the daily duties of the governor’s office.

“I really just do two things in life, I work and I watch my kids play sports, but not necessarily in that order.  I will tell you my three daughters are what drive me every single day, and it’s the reason I work so hard I want to make a better Mississippi for my three daughters and for all of Mississippi’s daughters and with the radical agenda of Democrat party, it’s more important now than ever before we have leaders who push back on that radical, woke agenda, and I’m willing to do that,” he said.

When asked what was one thing people might not know about him, but he wished they did, it was all about his daughters.

“I don’t know that everybody knows my three daughters all play sports, it is the reason I’m passionate about protecting women’s sports. In Mississippi, we said we would let boys play boy’s sports and girls play girl’s sports. We all know my opponent is spending millions from the very people funding this agenda. I’m willing to stand up to them,” Reeves said.

Reeves said it’s also important to make sure young people find their opportunities in Mississippi and not out-of-state.

“Small businesses are the life of our economy and the more businesses and more jobs we bring to Mississippi the more opportunities our kids have to stay here, we announced more than six billion dollars in new projects in 2022 alone, and that is what will keep our young people here, opportunity and quality of life,” he said.

With the campaign in the final stretch, the governor says he is looking forward to election night.

“We will sit back and let the people decide what ultimately happens, I’m confident in the people of Mississippi, they know what conservative leadership has meant for our state, during Covid, they know we banned vaccine mandates and passports,” Reeves said.

Reeves says he will work hard to meet as many voters as he can until the polls close on election day.

We asked both Presley and Governor Reeves the same set of questions for our candidate profiles.

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