Why Cindy Hyde-Smith won in Mississippi

The GOP scored another midterm Senate win as voters in ruby-red...

Posted: Nov 29, 2018 1:59 AM
Updated: Nov 29, 2018 1:59 AM

The GOP scored another midterm Senate win as voters in ruby-red Mississippi elected Republican Cindy Hyde-Smith over Democrat challenger Mike Espy to the United States Senate.

While the race was closer than it should have been, there are no moral victories in politics -- a win is a win. The outcome is significant for two reasons. First, Senator Hyde-Smith becomes the first woman elected to the Senate in Mississippi and her win strengthens the GOP majority in the Senate to 53-47.

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For a state deeply seeded in racial division, this Senate run-off was not about courting white or black voters, it was about turning out red or blue ones. In this conservative Southern state, voters opted for the conservative candidate over the Democrat challenger who campaigned as an independent voice for Mississippi.

After declaring victory, Senator Hyde-Smith assured voters that no matter who they voted for, she's "gonna always represent every Mississippian."

In a classy concession speech, Espy extended his prayers to Hyde-Smith "as she goes to Washington to unite a fully divided Mississippi."

President Donald Trump won Mississippi in 2016 over Hillary Clinton by a nearly 18-point margin.

The president is popular there; his policies are popular there. For that reason, Hyde-Smith campaigned as though she and Trump are as close as two coats of red paint and fully supported the Trump agenda. The President traveled to Mississippi Monday to rally the base and tout Hyde-Smith's conservative record.

Hyde-Smith campaigned on the issues that appeal to Mississippians: being pro-life, supporting our military, appointing conservatives to the Supreme Court and reigning in federal bureaucracy.

But she quickly went from running on offense to being on defense when a video surfaced of her telling supporters earlier this month that she would be "on the front row" if one of her supporters invited her "to a public hanging."

Hyde-Smith apologized to "anyone that was offended" by her comments. It was not a full-throated apology, but the trust and respect she has built up over her nearly two decades in public service went a long way towards helping her weather the political storm. Black Republican Charlie Evers, brother of slain civil rights leader Medgar Evers, defended Hyde-Smith, adding he "don't give a damn what other people think."

Espy is a former congressman who also served as Agriculture Secretary under President Bill Clinton. He campaigned as an Independent, yet as President Trump reminded voters, Espy supports the "Democrat agenda of socialism and open borders."

As a member of Congress, Espy voted with the Democratic Party 91% of the time and told supporters he would caucus with Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer.

Perhaps many voters took note of neighboring Senator Doug Jones, who campaigned for Espy. The Alabama Democrat ran against Republican Roy Moore who was accused of sexual misconduct with minors. Jones won in December of 2017, in large part by claiming he would serve as a conservative. However, since taking office Senator Jones has been a reliable vote for the Democratic agenda, including his vote against Judge Brett Kavanaugh.

Voters in Mississippi made it clear they support the McConnell direction of this country, not the Schumer direction. They support the conservative political record of Hyde-Smith under President Trump's leadership.

Like it or not, the expected outcome occurred in Mississippi, giving the GOP a valuable increased margin needed to put further pressure on Democrats.

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 266598

Reported Deaths: 5852
CountyCasesDeaths
DeSoto17807191
Hinds16967332
Harrison14298204
Rankin11280221
Jackson10976190
Lee9088145
Madison8619169
Jones6782118
Forrest6236124
Lauderdale6128192
Lowndes5564120
Lafayette5229101
Lamar507465
Washington4951125
Bolivar4149109
Oktibbeha409482
Panola388281
Pontotoc378560
Warren3698103
Monroe3693110
Marshall358570
Union357764
Pearl River3508106
Neshoba3499154
Leflore3122109
Lincoln307688
Hancock296362
Sunflower293075
Tate281162
Alcorn273554
Pike271081
Itawamba270063
Scott260849
Yazoo257156
Prentiss254554
Coahoma251555
Copiah250749
Tippah250150
Simpson243872
Leake238467
Marion225973
Grenada224272
Covington222473
Adams215371
Wayne215034
Winston207771
George204839
Newton200046
Attala197464
Tishomingo195661
Chickasaw189644
Jasper182538
Holmes172268
Clay167537
Tallahatchie157535
Stone152925
Clarke148662
Calhoun141822
Smith130726
Yalobusha123835
Walthall115037
Greene114529
Noxubee114126
Montgomery112736
Lawrence107617
Carroll106922
Perry105331
Amite102426
Webster97424
Claiborne89725
Tunica89321
Jefferson Davis88930
Benton86523
Humphreys84824
Kemper81020
Quitman7149
Franklin70717
Choctaw63813
Wilkinson59925
Jefferson57121
Sharkey45717
Issaquena1606
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 443009

Reported Deaths: 6662
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson649101007
Mobile31746574
Madison28413217
Tuscaloosa21566275
Montgomery20088332
Shelby19452132
Baldwin17333189
Lee13261107
Morgan12678142
Etowah12141181
Calhoun11555206
Marshall10487123
Houston9031164
Limestone838181
Cullman8296124
Elmore8243110
Lauderdale7946107
DeKalb7900107
St. Clair7876130
Talladega6523112
Walker6050183
Jackson603245
Colbert558194
Blount548586
Autauga540762
Coffee466964
Dale412785
Franklin377550
Russell358415
Chilton346873
Covington340880
Escambia339244
Tallapoosa3163109
Dallas313696
Chambers305470
Clarke303336
Pike265231
Lawrence255855
Marion254661
Winston234742
Bibb222948
Geneva213047
Marengo210531
Pickens200431
Hale186144
Barbour183438
Fayette178829
Butler174860
Cherokee166031
Henry160025
Monroe152621
Randolph146636
Washington142727
Clay130746
Crenshaw124845
Macon122837
Cleburne122125
Lamar120622
Lowndes116836
Wilcox108322
Bullock104628
Perry100518
Conecuh98022
Sumter90627
Greene77923
Coosa64018
Choctaw52124
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