Mississippi opens qualifying time for federal candidates

Candidates for federal offices began filing qualifying papers on Thursday in Mississippi. The state’s longest-serving member of Congress, Democratic Rep. Bennie Thompson, confirms that he’s seeking another two-year term.

The state’s three Republican U.S. representatives _ Steven Palazzo, Trent Kelly and Michael Guest _ are also expected to run again.

One of Mississippi’s two U.S. senators, Republican Cindy Hyde-Smith, is seeking a full six-year term. And, the Democrat she defeated in a November 2018 special election, former U.S. Agriculture Secretary Mike Espy, said weeks ago that he is running again. That would set up a rematch if both candidates win the party nominations.