Now that U.S. Sen Thad Cochran has announced his plans to run for re-election, the picture for 2014 has cleared up tremendously.
Here’s what we know:
Secretary of State Delbert Hosemann and State Auditor Stacey Pickering (likely) will not seek the position. They have said all along that they wouldn’t run against Cochran, and there is no reason to believe either has changed his mind.
Neither Attorney General Jim Hood nor Public Service Commissioner Brandon Presley will seek the Democratic nomination. While they have left their options open until this point, both said they would not run against Cochran. The only possible credible Democrat who might still run is former U.S. Rep. Travis Childers. While Childers has said he would likely not seek the seat against Cochran, he has not been definitive. If he runs, though, it will be just in case McDaniel somehow defeats Cochran.
McDaniel got his wish and likely his best chance at winning, though the odds are still long.