Tea party leaders call for focus on issues; campaigns continue to bash away

“You keep going after the sensational,” local tea party leader Roy Nicholson told media at the press conference in Jackson. “Go after the facts and issues critical to the lives of Mississippians.”

Meanwhile, incumbent Sen. Thad Cochran made campaign stops Wednesday that included Simpson County and Hattiesburg and challenger Chris McDaniel hit Corinth, Olive Branch and Grenada. Their campaigns exchanged unpleasantries in statements and ads in what has become the most bitter battle of the mid-term elections.

The Cochran campaign released a new television ad about four McDaniel supporters with tea party ties being arrested for conspiring to take photos of Cochran’s bedridden wife in a nursing home to use in a political hit piece. The ad says: “It just gets worse. Now Chris McDaniel’s radio cohost, fundraiser, and a hometown friend are charged with felonies. The McDaniel campaign scandal spreads. Had enough?”

The McDaniel campaign had fired up its own ad on Tuesday, titled “shameless,” in which McDaniel criticizes Cochran for hitting McDaniel in ads over the scandal. McDaniel in the ad says: “You’ve probably seen Thad Cochran’s negative attack ads. Newspapers call them shameless. I call them outrageous.”

Clarion Ledger