Aycox qualifies for District 3 race

By BRENT MAZE,

A Newton County man will be running for the Third Congressional District of Mississippi vacancy.

Michael Aycox, a corrections officer with the Mississippi Department of Corrections and a part-time Newton Police officer, qualified in February with the Democratic Party to run for election to the post that is being vacated by U.S. Rep. Gregg Harper.

Aycox will face Michael Ted Evans of Preston in the Democratic primary on Tuesday, June 5. On the Republican side, Sally Doty, Morgan Dunn, Michael Guest, Whit Hughes, Perry Parker and Katherine "Bitzy" Tate will face off in June.

Aycox, a native of the Poplar Springs Community in Newton, said he's running for office because he feels a call to serve his country.

"I served my country in the U.S. Navy, and I still feel the call to serve," Aycox said.

Aycox said he wants to continue to serve using "deck-plate leadership," a term that is used by naval officers to represent visible leaders who set the tone, know the mission, know their people and develop their people beyond their own expectations as a team and as individuals to the point that they would clean the deck plates of a ship.

He believes he can best represent the needs and interests of the public because he relates to typical Americans.

"Over half of Congress are millionaires," Aycox said. "That's a part of the one percent of the richest Americans in the nation. I feel like there's a major disconnect of Congress from the rest of America. I make an average salary, and I know what the people are going through, and I feel I can bring that to Washington."

Aycox graduated from Newton County High School in 2006 and then studied ministry and counseling at Johnson Bible College. In 2008, he graduated from the Mississippi Delta Law Enforcement Training Academy at the age of 20 representing the Newton Police Department.

He enlisted in the United States Navy where he was rated as a Master-at-Arms. His tenure included serving as an anti-terrorism specialist until he was diagnosed with papillary thyroid carcinoma, thyroid cancer, which is in full remission.

The diagnosis removed him from his role in anti-terrorism and thrust him into a position working as special programs coordinator for the Command Triad. After his honorable discharge, from the United States Navy, he returned home.

He continues his service as a state law enforcement officer with the Mississippi Department of Corrections and is now seeking the 3rd District Congressional seat for Mississippi.

Aycox declares himself a conservative, and he feels that the Democratic Party has been the true conservative party of American history.

"This is the party of Andrew Jackson, one of the original conservatives," Aycox said. "Over our history, the Democratic Party has been the true conservative party. Somewhere in the last few decades, that became reversed. But it's time for the party to return to its conservative roots."

Aycox said he has received a lot of support from his family and his military family, including Command Master Chief Bill Houlihan, who gave him advice about getting into politics.

"My slogan is 'Bring them the fight,'" Aycox said. "I know it's going to be an uphill battle, but I'm going to bring them the fight."       

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