It never ceases to amaze me the ways that powerful well-to-do people will try to work the system in their favor even if it means taking money from poor people in the poorest state in the union — with the (alleged) added assistance of a powerful Republican then-governor.
Text messages entered Monday into the state’s ongoing civil lawsuit over the welfare scandal reveal that former Gov. Phil Bryant pushed to make NFL legend Brett Favre’s volleyball idea a reality.
The texts show that the then-governor even guided Favre on how to write a funding proposal so that it could be accepted by the Mississippi Department of Human Services – even after Bryant ousted the former welfare agency director John Davis for suspected fraud.
“Just left Brett Favre,” Bryant texted nonprofit founder Nancy New in July of 2019, within weeks of Davis’ departure. “Can we help him with his project. We should meet soon to see how I can make sure we keep your projects on course.”
When Favre asked Bryant how the new agency director might affect their plans to fund the volleyball stadium, Bryant assured him, “I will handle that… long story but had to make a change. But I will call Nancy and see what it will take,” according to the filing and a text Favre forwarded to New.
The newly released texts, filed Monday by an attorney representing Nancy New’s nonprofit, show that Bryant, Favre, New, Davis and others worked together to channel at least $5 million of the state’s welfare funds to build a new volleyball stadium at University of Southern Mississippi, where Favre’s daughter played the sport. Favre received most of the credit for raising funds to construct the facility.
This is in addition to the $77 million in additional funds for the needy that were allegedly misspent by a shady non-profit with Republican connections.
$77 million + $5 million in a dirt-poor state like Mississippi would have helped an awful lot of needy people.
Note also that Mississippi’s current GOP Gov. Tate Reeves “abruptly fired the attorney bringing the state’s case when he tried to subpoena documents related to the volleyball stadium.”
Reeves famously hates poor people and helped precipitate and then ignore the water crisis engulfing poor Jackson, Miss. residents.
Meanwhile, Favre appears to be so crooked I fully expect him to run for Republican office in the near future. The GOP base LOVES Republicans who cheat poor Black people and then paint the poor Black people with the age-old racist brush of being shifty and lazy.