Battling Barbour: Chris McDaniel and the Fight For Property Rights


This is an expanded version of the story related in Remember Mississippi.
Senator Chris McDaniel has always been a fighter. He’s always stood up for the rights of all Mississippians, no matter the political cost. There is never a political calculation with him, just an intense desire to defend freedom, liberty, and the Constitution.
These facts are best illustrated by his fight to reform eminent domain, which ultimately shielded the property rights of all Mississippians against the encroaching arm of a government in the hands of crony capitalists. This battle, pitting governor against state senator, was the first crack in the current party split.
Governor Haley Barbour aggressively opposed Chris McDaniel in his 2014 race against Thad Cochran. Most contend that he did so in order to keep Ole Thad, his lifeline to the appropriations process, in place in the US Senate. That’s certainly true but there’s another aspect to the story: Barbour simply disliked McDaniel.
The main source of the bitterness stemmed from the fact that Senator McDaniel was one of the only members of the legislature who had the guts to stand up to Barbour. And he did so on the important issue of eminent domain. This issue showcased the divide between conservatives and the Establishment in Mississippi, and is further proof of the influence peddling that dominates state government.
Governor Barbour was more than eager to allow corporations to acquire private property for private use, long a thorny issue in Mississippi and across the country. Under the Constitution, the government is allowed to acquire private property for public use with “just compensation.” But the problem came when the government began siding with corporations that wanted private property for their own uses. This was abuse, pure and simple, and blatantly unconstitutional.
But in 2005 the business interests got a major shot in the arm when

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