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Reed to challenge Sojourner; Dearing considering run

NATCHEZ — One candidate has stepped forward and another says he’s considering a run for the Mississippi Senate seat currently held by Sen. Melanie Sojourner.

Meadville Mayor Lane Reed announced Monday he plans to run for the seat.

Saying conservative principles and effective governing are not enemies, Reed said he has spent the last six months visiting residents and community leaders in the district.

“There is a tremendous need for a bold leader to work within the structure of the legislative system, with the governor, the lieutenant governor, our other statewide elected officials and state agencies for the needs and priorities of the four counties that comprise Mississippi State Senate District 37,” he said in a news release.

Reed’s announcement makes him the first official challenger to Sojourner, R—Natchez, who defeated long-time incumbent Sen. Bob Dearing in 2011 and took office in January 2012.

Sojourner said she plans to qualify to run again.

“It has been an incredible honor to serve and I am very proud of the things we have been (able) to do,” she said. “I take great pride in it and really look forward to seeing what we can build on it.”

Dearing said Monday he has received encouragement from many to run for the office again, and will make a decision in early January.

“I’ve got a lot of praying to do about this,” Dearing said.

District 37 includes portions of Adams, Franklin, Amite and Pike Counties.

Qualifying for office begins Jan. 1 and ends Feb. 27.

This story was updated at 2:07 p.m. to include a comment from Sojourner.

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