At the national level, we are watching Democrats attempt to use impeachment as a political weapon against the President of the United States. It is a transparent political hit job by a party that has failed to gain the support of the people. Here in Mississippi, Democrat Jim Hood is pulling straight from the party playbook. 

Hood spent the last year desperately working to turn a shaky story with thin sourcing about a proposed road near Tate Reeves’ house into a political scandal. He launched a full-scale investigation into the man he knew he would face in this gubernatorial election. He threw every available resource of his office at Tate Reeves. He said he was working nights and weekends to dig up dirt. 



After career investigators in the office failed to produce the results he wanted, by his own admission he took over the investigation personally, even claiming to have typed up the report himself—giving him the personal latitude to shape his report (which may better be referred to as a dossier at this point) into the most politically damaging document that he could possibly produce. 

And what did he come up with? Nothing. The bulk of his evidence is related to a separate road project that was a priority for most of Mississippi’s leadership—upgrading one of the busiest stretches of roadway in our state. And if he wanted to prove that Reeves was involved, he didn’t have to dig deep into Mississippi’s law enforcement budget to find some isolated emails.  The Lieutenant Governor was proudly pictured in the local paper alongside other top officials at the groundbreaking for the project. Some scandal. 

The remainder of Hood’s report rests on innuendo and an anonymous source with an axe to grind—along with the emails of a lobbyist who has actively opposed Tate Reeves since the beginning of the campaign. That Hood asked two former judges to evaluate his report and they found no evidence of impropriety appears to be less than footnote material by the media. 

Having the vast resources of the state’s top law enforcement officer, ultimately Hood’s personal inquisition amounted to nothing more than a political press release that was, by any meaningful measure, a total dud.  And now, using what appears to be a fairly good adaptation of the Adam Schiff shuffle, he’s running attack ads misconstruing as accurate these refuted claims. 

However, as recent events in Washington have shown, the tables turn quickly.  What was intended by the Democrats as the coup de grace of President Trump’s impeachment and removal from office appears to be the death knell for Joe Biden’s candidacy for President.  Hood’s personal inquisition raises questions about this whole charade. Did Jim Hood discuss the timing or substance of his investigation with his political team? Did he strategize with political consultants about what to do?  

Abuse of office by coordinating with political personnel to influence an active investigation, now that’s something that should be investigated.  I have no expectation that Hood will answer these questions and almost less that the media will ask them or in any reasonable respect attempt to hold him accountable.

Rep. Mark Baker is a Republican from Brandon who recently ran unsuccessfully for the GOP Attorney General nomination.