Mississippi NewsMississippi Politics

Called to challenge Goliath

State Rep. Dan Eubanks to run for Senate in 2024

Photo: State Rep. Dan Eubanks (Courtesy photo)

Mississippi State Rep. Dan Eubanks is well acquainted with the story of David and Goliath, he’s probably spoken about it or preached on the story with the work he does in church ministry when he’s not voting on legislation at the state Capitol in Jackson.  

It’s the Old Testament Bible story of the young boy who faced impossible odds in challenging the monstrous Philistine with Goliath’s vast army behind him, then defeating him with a simple stone and slingshot. 

Eubanks is the Walls Republican who is running unopposed for reelection to his seat in the state Legislature this year. However, he has set his sights on another legislative seat a bit further away, as Eubanks has let it be known he will be challenging Sen. Roger Wicker (R-Mississippi) when Wicker’s seat comes up for election the following year.  

The comparison with the David and Goliath story comes easily. Eubanks knows it, he doesn’t shy away from it and embraces it, quickly pointing out this can be the political version of the underdog knocking down the heavily-favored incumbent.  

“It’s a big step, jumping into deep water in a big pond, but I do have a really good working relationship with a lot of major grassroots and conservative groups around the state,” Eubanks said. “None of them are happy with the current officeholder, so I’m stepping out in faith. I know who delivers the victory.”

The decision to take a run at the longtime Senator, who has been in office since 2007, comes with Eubanks seeing how Wicker has voted on a number of issues. He believes Wicker has become out of touch with Mississippi and how they want to be represented in Washington, D.C.

“If you look at D.C. and ‘the Swamp,’ it consists mostly of people who have turned their government service into a career here,” Eubanks said. “You have Joe Biden, who has been there for 50 years, your Pelosis, Schumers, Mitch McConnells, and Roger Wicker. It was never intended to be a career by our founding fathers. The longer you’re there the more you lose touch with the people back home.”

The move to declare his intent with the Federal Election Commission also comes, Eubanks said, after a lot of thought and prayer, and a belief that the next few years are going to be an important time for the nation.  

“Regardless of the outcome of the race I will know that I was faithful to what He was calling me to do,” said Eubanks. “I really believe that in the next term between 2025-2030 our nation is sitting on a precipice and if we don’t have people full of courage, of moral character, of an actual love for this country and for the freedoms that we enjoy, it’s all going to go by the wayside.”

The issues Eubanks are most concerned about involve the growing numbers of dollars in debt the United States finds itself in, and the growing numbers of illegal aliens crossing the southern border into the United States without the federal government doing more to stem the tide.   

“We have got to get the debt under control and the border crisis is just as huge,” Eubanks said. “In addition to the almost five-and-a-half million people who have poured in that are undocumented in our country over the last 2-3 years, there is a drug pipeline there that’s killing 100,000 Americans a year. We’ve left the door wide open for that element.” 

Eubanks’ move into politics initially came as a response to what he described as the attack on Constitutional freedoms during the Barack Obama administration. He chose to run for the House of Representatives instead of running for a Congressional seat at the time, because Eubanks felt being in the state Legislature was where he needed to be. 

State Rep. Dan Eubanks during a recent political event at Cedar Hill Farm near Hernando. (Bob Bakken/mississippinewsgroup.com)

“The woke mob was going to make you play by their rules and they would use the government to be their enforcement arm,” Eubanks explained.  “That lit my fire, watching our First Amendment rights start to disintegrate.  I started thinking I could run for the state Legislature because the state really is our last line of defense.”

He immediately made a mark in Jackson as a co-author of the Religious Freedom Bill, officially titled the Protecting Freedom of Conscience from Government Discrimination Act, or House Bill 1523. The bill says that state government can’t punish people who refuse to provide services because of a religious opposition to same-sex marriage, extramarital sex or transgender people. LGBTQ advocates called it an attack on them.  

Most recently during his time in the Legislature, Eubanks has supported measures that helped provide highway funding and he supported the teacher pay raise increase. 

He has come under fire for his opposition to local and private tax measures, such as the taxes to fund parks and recreation improvements in some DeSoto County cities. Eubanks defended those votes, explaining the process prevents residents from directly deciding if they should be taxed or not.  

“If you dive into it, it’s unconstitutional and the way it gets extended is unconstitutional,” Eubanks explained. “Only the people that live there have the authority based on state code to vote to tax themselves. It’s a work around of the very people who are the only ones to have the right to vote to put a tax on themselves. It’s taxation without representation.”

It will need to be money that will determine the size of the stone Eubanks will be able to hurl at the incumbent Senator as this challenge begins. Eubanks is well aware that Wicker has a lot already available with the potential to call up more. However, campaign budgets don’t always amount to votes on Election Day.  

“I don’t need millions of dollars of special interest money to get a message out and if it resonates with folks, they’ll get it out and pass it along,” Eubanks said. “I’ve seen people who have beaten incumbents on very small budgets because people got sick of what was being done and how they were being represented. I’m hoping that is what is going to happen. This is something that God’s calling me to do and if He’s calling me to do it I don’t care how insurmountable it is.”

Deciding to run for Senate now was also aided by Eubanks not having opposition for the House this election cycle.   

“I think that it is important to make my intentions clear now, especially if you don’t have deep pockets of special interest money,” he said. “You can’t really raise money until you declare that’s what you’re going to do. You can’t even start receiving money until you file with the FEC and state your intentions.”

Grassroots support has already started to form as more people across the state learn that Eubanks has decided to run for Senate. 

“I’ve already started having people reach out to me from around the state and say that they’re behind me,” Eubanks said. “I’m hoping to harness the grassroots from around the state and the different organizations that I have been a part of.”

Saying he is stepping out in faith, Dan Eubanks will follow what he says has been a calling to run for U.S. Senate as he continues to represent his district in the state Legislature. For Eubanks, it is the right thing to do.  

“I’ve been tried by fire in that I know what it’s like to stand up against my own party and fight for what I believe is true and right,” Eubanks said. “All of it has felt like God is equipping me for something more.”

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