And speaking of McDaniel’s Jones County, it should be noted that many people consider it to have been the hardest hit by Katrina outside the Coast area. Twelve people died there, nearly 1,000 homes were severely mangled or destroyed and thousands more damaged. An expert once told me it appeared part of Katrina’s eye ripped while passing over Jones County and spawned severe straight-line winds and tornadoes.
McDaniel’s predecessor in the state Senate, now State Auditor Stacey Pickering, and other Jones County officials at the time were concerned their inland area was being overlooked and were calling for federal help.
Would McDaniel, if he were in the U.S. Senate, have told them, “That’s a tough one, let me think about it and get back to you?” Of course not.
The McDaniel camp has fertile ground to say six-term Sen. Cochran has been in Washington too long. For days now they’ve been blanketing inboxes with Cochran comments that he doesn’t know much about the tea party or Chris McDaniel (how dare he?), and comments he made in 2008 about Barack Obama being a nice guy and the commonwealth probably wouldn’t self-destruct if he were elected.
And Cochran has a long record on federal spending he has to defend.
But I’ll repeat what I said in this column back in October:
“The future of the state of Mississippi hung in the balance. Nearly a third of its economy was shut down. Whole cities had been obliterated. Without federal aid, the state would face an instant depression and recovery would take a generation … All other issues and politics aside, any Mississippian that faults Cochran for doing all he could do to help his state in its hour of need needs to have their head examined.”