Not Over? McDaniel May Challenge GOP Primary Loss to Sen. Cochran
John Roberts brought us the latest this morning on the contentious Republican primary battle in Mississippi, which may not yet be over. Six-term Sen. Thad Cochran was declared the victor over Tea Party-backed challenger Chris McDaniel by only about 7,000 votes.
But McDaniel, a state senator, spoke of "dozens of irregularities" in his address to supporters, suggesting votes by independents and Democrats were the difference. He never conceded the race in the speech.
"We are not prone to surrender, we Mississippians," he said. "Before this race is over we have to be absolutely certain the Republican primary was won by Republican voters."
According to FoxNews.com, Tea Party leaders said the campaign is weighing whether to challenge the results on the grounds that Democratic voters allegedly crossed over from the Democratic primary to vote for Cochran. Under Mississippi law, voters in one party's primary must intend to support that party's nominee in the general election.
If they do decide to challenge, Roberts explained that the McDaniel camp will be looking for evidence of Democrats voting June 3 in the Democratic primary, then crossing over to vote in the GOP race yesterday. He said that in the polling place where he reported from yesterday, poll workers were making sure that was not happening.
FoxNews.com digital politics editor Chris Stirewalt also reacted this morning on America's Newsroom, saying the Cochran campaign won by bringing out non-traditional GOP primary voters by highlighting that Cochran agrees with them on "big spending."
He said Cochran's win is good news for the GOP's chances of retaking the Senate in November, explaining that Democrats believe they would have had a chance to defeat McDaniel.