With less than four weeks to go before the Republican Party primary for Governor, rival campaigns are quietly calculating how Foster’s surge would affect undecided conservative voters. Mississippi Today’s Larrison Camp published a story on Foster’s campaign that prohibited Foster from spending time with Foster without a male friend. Foster’s tone changed from being circumspect (“I’m sorry Ms. Campbell doesn’t share our views, but I made this decision out of respect for my wife, our character and our faith,” Foster wrote on Twitter). Foster posted on Facebook Wednesday morning, “Once more, the liberal left & Hollywood are attacking someone because of their integrity, professionalism and Christian beliefs.” They are not just attacking me. They’re attacking many Mississippians who share these values. Foster’s campaign paid for advertisements to boost Foster’s Twitter response. Foster also said to Campbell that he didn’t agree that the request was sexist, as his campaign stated that Campbell could not shadow him. Foster spoke to Mississippi Today Wednesday afternoon. He said that he was confident that most Mississippians know that it isn’t about discrimination based on gender, but a personal conviction. Foster said that he is a God-fearing husband and father who loves his wife. However, he acknowledged that having a ride with him wouldn’t necessarily be immoral. The Bible also teaches us not to show impropriety. Foster said that he did what he had done, and that he will stick to his guns. Foster said on Wednesday morning that it was funny how this works sometimes. It can sometimes backfire on them when the liberal media plays these games with them. Foster said, “It sometimes helps the person that they’re trying too hurt.” Foster said, “I don’t regret it.” The August 6 Republican primary in Mississippi could be a pivotal one. Foster’s strategy and controversy could impact the outcome of the long-running frontrunner Lt. Governor. Tate Reeves is the former chief justice of Mississippi Supreme Court. Bill Waller Jr. is the ex-chief justice of Mississippi Supreme Court. Many internal and public Republican campaign polls show Foster has low support, trailing Waller and Reeves. But strategists close to Waller and Tate Reeves, as well as observers from around the state, are questioning whether any candidate can surpass the threshold of 50 percent to avoid an August 27th runoff. Many GOP campaign operatives tried to understand how Tuesday’s news could impact the election outcome. Foster could secure the runoff with a slight bump from the controversy. This would draw national media attention and bring attention to the first Republican governor’s race since 1991. It may also be a contentious one. Nathan Shrader (chair of the Department of Government and Politics, Millsaps College) said that “I think this could eat into Reeves.” “Waller’s messaging was pragmatic in terms specific policy proposals. Tate’s messaging was more about a conservative culture battle, with the license plate advertisement and other ‘Hollywood liberal” stuff. Foster’s messaging this week is closer to Waller’s than Tate’s. I think this makes it clear for some voters that Foster is part of that camp.” Foster’s message is attracting positive responses from many potential voters. Foster received a Facebook comment from DeSoto County that said: “To be completely honest, it convinced me to vote for you!” I was aware of many positive comments and was considering other candidates, but I saw this article and decided to vote for you. Hattiesburg man wrote: “You have our vote now!” Although you won’t have to answer the liberal left on judgement day, this is one thing you won’t have to answer God for on that day. A McLaurin woman wrote: “I think your stance won quite a few votes. As a teacher, we all closely follow each candidate (which you probably already know). It has nothing to do education, but you won my vote over it!” Mississippi’s recent political history shows that third-place candidates can force a runoff. The contentious 2014 Republican primary for the U.S Senate saw state senator Chris McDaniel earn 49.5 percent, while then-U.S. Senator Thad Cochran earned 49.0 percent. Thomas Carey, who unlike Foster did not campaign for the seat in any way, received 1.5 percent of votes, which led to a runoff election, which saw Cochran return to the Senate. To support this important work, you can make a regular donation to us today as part of the Spring Member Drive.