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By EMILY WAGSTER PETTUS
JACKSON (AP) â€” Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbourâ€™s wife says the thought of his running for president â€śhorrifies meâ€ť because it would be â€śa huge sacrifice for a family to make.â€ť
â€śItâ€™s been a lot to be first lady of the state of Mississippi and this would be 50 times bigger,â€ť Marsha Barbour told south Mississippiâ€™s WLOX-TV on Thursday.
Sheâ€™s not the first member of the Barbour family to express reservations about the governorâ€™s possible run for the Republican nomination. One of the Barboursâ€™ adult sons, Sterling, told a magazine editor in an email two weeks ago that heâ€™s a private person and he hopes his father doesnâ€™t run for president.
Barbourâ€™s wife and son both say theyâ€™ll support him if he enters the race. Barbour, 63, has said he may announce his intentions this month.
Jim Dyke, a spokesman for the governor, told The Associated Press on Friday that Marsha Barbour was saying what everyone knows about campaigns.
â€śThere are unique demands posed by the daunting challenge of campaigning for and serving as president of the United States,â€ť Dyke said.
Barbour, in his second term as governor, has appeared in Iowa, Nevada, South Carolina and other states with early presidential caucuses or primaries.
Marsha Barbour has kept a relatively low profile as the governorâ€™s wife, aside from her help with Hurricane Katrina recovery. She spent several weeks on the Gulf Coast after Katrina struck in August 2005, communicating with Barbourâ€™s staff about neighborhoods in need of food and other necessities.
She said a presidential campaign could take two years, and there would be another eight-year commitment if her husband wins two terms. That, she said, would take 10 years from â€śthe last part our productive lives.â€ť
â€śIt horrifies me,â€ť she said. â€śItâ€™s a very overwhelming task and heâ€™s going out and doing some things just to see if he gets that fire in his belly. If heâ€™s not passionate about it, thereâ€™s no reason for him to run.â€ť
Haley and Marsha Barbour have been married since December 1971. They have two grown sons and four grandchildren.
Marsha Barbour said sheâ€™s praying about her husbandâ€™s decision.
â€śIf God and Haley decide to do it, Iâ€™m sure God will give me strength to be a good partner,â€ť she said.