BILOXI, Miss.–Keeping his seat in the U.S. House is now Cong. Steven Palazzo’s goal going into the general election, where he will face Democrat Matt Moore in the Fourth District race. That fight may come a bit easier than Tuesday’s battle between Palazzo and former Rep. Gene Taylor, who a former Democrat, but switch sides to run against Palazzo in the Republican primary.
It was a neck in neck battle, but in the end Palazzo declared victory with 51 percent, with Taylor at 43 percent.
With less than 50 percent of the vote, the two would have had to ce each other again in a runoff June 24.
Palazzo’s victory came despite some problems with the wrong ballots going to the wrong precincts in Gulfport, a matter which was expected to be cleared up Wednesday with a manual count of those ballots.
Palazzo said Tuesday night that one of his main priorities will be fighting for the economy in south Mississippi, which includes keeping the C-130 squadron at Keesler Air Force Base. The federal government and the Air Force may move the airmen and women and their families to Little Rock.
“They’ve been trying to move those planes for over three years and they’re still here because I’ve been asking them the hard questions,” he said. “They know what we know, that they belong right here.”
He said the reason he believes that the feds want to move the squadron as a favor to a Demopcrat lawmaker.
Palazzo said there was nothing personal in the race between the race between he and Taylor.
“I just believe in working hard for south Mississippi, that’s why I’m on three committees important to south Mississippi.”