Tea Party challenger Chris McDaniel won the Republican vote in the Republican runoff election on Tuesday night, but it didn’t matter, because incumbent Senator Thad Cochran was able to persuade a legion of Democrats to support him under the “open” rules of the race, in which any Democrat who didn’t vote in the regular primary was free to cross over and meddle in the GOP runoff. Cochran did this through a combination of race-baiting attacks on McDaniel, and touting his ability to make government larger and bring home more goodies from Washington, whereas McDaniel is one of those kooky extremists who thinks running trillion-dollar deficits every year means we’re running out of money.
The result was an “upset” runoff win for the veteran incumbent, 50.9 to 49.1 percent – a margin of about 6,600 votes. There is little doubt Cochran’s vow to serve the interests of Obama voters made the difference. Fox News notes that a hefty chunk of that 6,600 vote margin came from a single county: