JACKSON, Miss., Nov. 6 (UPI) -- Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour won a second term in an easy victory Tuesday over a Democratic trial lawyer with right-wing positions on social issues.
Barbour had 56 percent of the vote to 44 percent for Democrat John Arthur Eaves Jr. with more than half the vote in, The (Jackson) Clarion-Ledger reported. Barbour called the outcome "a mandate" as he claimed victory.
Barbour, a former chairman of the Republican National Committee and lobbyist, focused on his handling of Hurricane Katrina during the campaign, The New York Times said. Barbour was perceived as decisive and reassuring, unlike Kathleen Blanco in neighboring Louisiana.
His strong ties to Republicans in Washington also helped Mississippi get federal aid after the storm.
John Arthur Eaves Jr., whose law practice focused on asbestos litigation, combined attacks on "big tobacco companies, big oil and big insurance" with calls for school prayer. He boasted of his gun collection and said he would house it in the governor's mansion.
Eaves provided much of his campaign war chest.