SUN HERALD | Editorial: Let’s keep Thad Cochran in the Senate

This is Cochran’s seventh campaign for the Senate, and one we encouraged him to make last summer when he was still weighing his options.

As we noted then, Cochran played an indispensable role in helping steer tens of billions of dollars in federal aid and tax incentives to help the Coast and inland areas of Mississippi recover from Hurricane Katrina, the nation’s worst natural disaster.

His effectiveness was enhanced by his seniority. Today, only three senators have more tenure in the Senate than Cochran.

But longevity is not the key to Cochran’s success. At 76, he remains an active legislator and a respected conciliator among his colleagues, admired for his willingness to move legislation forward in a bipartisan manner when possible.

When he decided to seek re-election in December, he said he would “run hard and be successful so that I can continue to serve the people of Mississippi and our nation effectively.”

We encourage voters in Tuesday’s Republican primary to move him closer to that goal.

That no major Republican was willing to take on Cochran is testament to the senator’s standing in both the state and the Senate.

Not that Cochran is unopposed. State Sen. Chris McDaniel is conducting a fierce campaign to unseat the state’s senior senator.

We remain disappointed Cochran did not engage McDaniel in at least one debate.

But there is no debating that Thad Cochran should be re-elected.

Again, we have made no secret of our admiration for Cochran’s service and our desire for him to stay in the U.S. Senate as an effective legislative leader for both Mississippi and the nation.

This endorsement simply makes it official.

This editorial represents the views of the Sun Herald editorial board. Opinions expressed by columnists, cartoonists and letter writers are their own.