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Thad Cochran will lose anyway



Thad Cochran

Senator Thad Cochran (R-Miss.) can’t win the general election. His campaign did many disgusting and possibly illegal things. But suppose he wins the legal battles to come? Suppose no judge or jury can or will convict him or his campaign? He still can’t win. Because he laid himself wide-open to a common Democratic attack. So CNAV repeats: he will wind up hoist by his own petard.

Evidence of lawbreaking

Thad Cochran and his campaign staff insist they did nothing wrong. They also say, “Don’t believe the witness.” The witness-in-chief, Stevie Fielder, did sell his story. One offering to sell a story, might exaggerate or even lie outright. Every journalist knows this. Furthermore: Fielder calls himself an associate pastor at his church. At least one deacon says in effect: he might call himself that, but they don’t. (See John Hayward’s essay, “A Mess in Mississippi,” at Human Events.)

Then why in the name of William M. Tweed did Thad Cochran or his campaign manager hire him? For they do admit to hiring him. Never once did Saleem Baird, who dealt with him, say, “I never heard of this man.” Oh, no. He confirmed: he, as Thad Cochran’s campaign treasurer, hired Stevie Fielder.

But what did he hire him for? To get out the vote, Baird says. Baird also said he paid Fielder in cash. Fielder says no, Baird handed him envelopes to hand out to voters to get them to vote, then refused to pay Fielder for that service.

Fielder’s word against Thad Cochran’s? Not quite. Fielder has a corroborating witness. Meet Rickey Cole, Chairman of the Mississippi Democratic Party. (See Bryan Fischer’s piece in OneNewsNow.) He told a Wall Street Journal reporter, according to the Clarion-Ledger, in the days before the runoff,

Large sums of cash are being passed around. These guys are old-school ‘walking around money’ vote buyers. It is happening in Hinds County, but they are trying to move black voters in the Delta, adams (sic), jefferson (sic), and claiborne (sic) too.

And he didn’t like it one bit. He told the Clarion-Ledger directly:

I think Democrats ought to vote for a Democratic nominee, Republicans ought to vote for a Republican nominee, and independents ought to wait until November.

Chris McDaniel, who lost to Thad Cochran in the runoff, at last report says he has identified 4900 voters who voted in the Democratic primary and then the Republican runoff. That’s illegal. If McDaniel finds another 1800 such votes, maybe he can get a judge to order another runoff.

“Sore loser!” cries the Thad Cochran campaign, according to Matthew Boyle at But Boyle also says there might be more. The Federal Election Commission is looking into shady activities by the Thad Cochran campaign, other than vote-buying or bad crossovers. From Roll Call comes a report going back to before the primary itself. The FEC sent this Request for Additional Information to the treasurer of a super-PAC calling themselves “Mississippi Conservatives,” who support Thad Cochran. Kent Cooper at Roll Call gives this summary:

The FEC letter states the committee may have failed to file one or more of the required 24-hour report(s) regarding “last minute” independent expenditures. Specifically, the committee did not file a 24-hour report for a $15,000 payment on May 30th to Scott Howell & Company as an independent expenditures against Chris McDaniel, R-Miss.

Scott Howell and Company placed last-minute ads calling Chris McDaniel a racist.

And that’s not all. Boyle describes questions involving a possible illegal bank loan to the Thad Cochran campaign.

But all right. Throw all that evidence out the window. Call Chris McDaniel a sore loser. Where does that leave Thad Cochran?

Why Thad Cochran will not win

Thad Cochran

Senator Thad Cochran (R-Miss.). Photo: United States Senate

Rick Manning, of Americans for Limited Government, published this blistering analysis in Investors Business Daily.  Says he:

Anyone who has been paying close attention to electoral politics for at least the past four years knows that the Democrats have run very tight voter suppression campaigns aimed at single-issue conservatives. Typically these campaigns feature previously unknown groups sending mail into targeted voters denouncing the GOP nominee as being anti-gun, or pro-abortion, or a supporter of tax increases.

Or, as in this case, indulging in race-baiting, and asking people to vote for him because he can “bring home the bacon,” in the form of federal grants. Which is how Thad Cochran won that runoff.

By “voter suppression” Manning means an effort calculated to get conservative voters to sit on their hands and not vote in November.

Thad Cochran will no doubt say, then, that CNAV and our sources are playing into the Democrats’ hands. That is not the question. The question is whether Thad Cochran is worth supporting. The question is whether he is a true conservative.

Answers: No and No. Thirty-five thousand times no, that being the number of those who always used to vote Democratic and suddenly voted in the Republican runoff. That’s the number Chris McDaniel has to work with.

The Senate Conservatives Fund is the chief rival to the National Republican Senatorial Committee. Today they listed all Republican Senators who supported the Thad Cochran campaign. Some of these are conservatives who should know better. The rest are the rogues’ gallery of RINOs. Among them: Senator Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska. The Write-in Senator. The Senator who heard voices telling her not to let the true conservative have the seat!

If that’s not enough to get conservatives to sit on their hands, the Democrats will make sure every conservative in Mississippi knows it.

Thad Cochran, in sum, will not return to the United States Senate. If Chris McDaniel does not defeat him in court, Travis Childers will in the general election. What does he say for himself?

While serving in the U.S. House of Representatives, Travis received the endorsements of the National Rifle Association (NRA), earning an “A-plus” pro-gun voting record, and the National Right to Life for his “exemplary pro-life record.” He also received the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s Spirit of Enterprise Award in recognition of his pro-business record.

Hm-m-m-m. He sounds more Republican than Thad Cochran. He certainly looks more conservative, after the way Thad Cochran won the runoff.

The OnTheIssues site grids Travis Childers as a moderate with populist leanings. Thad Cochran grids out as conservative. But that was before his runoff campaign. Today he’d likely grid out as moderate (right in the mushy middle), or even liberal! Chris McDaniel grids out as at least as conservative as Thad Cochran does. Or did.

Chris McDaniel could beat Travis Childers. But Thad Cochran will not be able to. He should withdraw from the race, if only to avoid a humiliation. Unless he wants people to remember him as a lunatic as well as a Democrat in Republican clothing.

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Terry A. Hurlbut has been a student of politics, philosophy, and science for more than 35 years. He is a graduate of Yale College and has served as a physician-level laboratory administrator in a 250-bed community hospital. He also is a serious student of the Bible, is conversant in its two primary original languages, and has followed the creation-science movement closely since 1993.

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