SOUTH MISSISSIPPI (WLOX) - One day after her senatorial appointment by Gov. Phil Bryant, Cindy Hyde-Smith was already on the campaign trail.
Her first stop was on the Mississippi Gulf Coast.
"I got up this morning and I thought, 'What a beautiful day driving to the Coast.' I never get tired of coming to the Coast," she said. "I can assure you that, but it's a lot of important issues here."
Hyde-Smith will be facing some tough competition in the November special election.
She combined her first campaign stop with a learning tour at the Port of Gulfport.
"I have a huge heart for this Gulf Coast. Because the economy down here is so important to me," she said. "There are so many things that have federal issues attached to here, and I wanted to come here first."
Her tour of the Coast included more than one stop. After her fact-finding mission at the Port of Gulfport, she came to Ocean Springs where she had some face-to-face time with her supporters.
The Roost was filled with woman power.
"We as Republican women are delighted," said Sandra McKiernon, the congressional district director for the Mississippi Federation of Republican Women. "We love Cindy Hyde Smith. She has done so much for Mississippi, both back as a state senator and especially as agricultural commissioner. We can't wait to see the things she can do for the United States and for Mississippi."
Supporters say her work ethic, attitude and problem-solving skills will keep her in the Senate seat long after November. "She's a healer," McKiernon said. "You give Cindy Hyde Smith a task to do and she's going to do it, and she's going to do it right."
Heath Hillman, chairman of the Jackson County Republican Executive Committee, is likewise impressed.
"She follows a long line of really hard-working Mississippians who've gone to Washington to make a difference for our state," he said. "And I'm excited about. I think the people in this area are excited about it."
Hyde Smith will be sworn as senator on April 9.