When we came out with our 2023 gubernatorial ratings last month, it initially seemed like the Mississippi governor's race would be the least interesting of the trio of off-year races. But over the past month, there have been some intriguing developments in Republican Gov. Tate Reeves's reelection bid that have caused us to reevaluate our rating.

The best news for Reeves is that he avoided a major primary challenger, with Bill Waller Jr., a former state Supreme Court chief justice, passing on a rematch of their 2019 intraparty battle. That will allow the incumbent to turn his attention to November—which may be needed after Democrats landed a strong recruit in Public Service Commissioner Brandon Presley.

Presley is a conservative Democrat—a necessity to even have a prayer in the Deep South—and yes, he's also related to that other Presley from Tupelo, Miss., holding up a worn picture of Elvis in his intro video. He also talks about growing up in the "no stoplight town" of Nettleton, where he'd eventually go on to be the youngest mayor in Mississippi. Presley

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