Mississippi: Syria “complicated,” says Wicker. US Sen. Roger Wicker (R), a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, speaking to a state press corps luncheon, said, “Syria is complicated. We want to defeat ISIL … Bashar al-Assad wants to defeat ISIL,” reported the Clarion-Ledger. Wicker supported the US bombing of a Syrian airbase and called Assad a “war criminal.” ……. South Carolina: McMaster would sign “open carry.” If the legislature passes a bill allowing people to carry a gun openly and without a permit, Gov. Henry McMaster (R) would sign it. McMaster “believes it is constitutional,” reported McMaster spokesman Brian Symmes and “appreciates the House’s hard work” on this legislation ……. North Carolina: Butterfield receives arts award. Arena Stage last week presented US Rep. G. K. Butterfield (D), former chairman of the Congressional Black Caucus, its annual American Voice Award for support of the performing arts, reports Roll Call. The award was presented at the theater’s production of “A Raisin in the Sun.” Butterfield lives in an apartment across the street from Arena Stage, one reason he moved to the neighborhood, he said …….