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Republican Sen. Cindy Hyde-Smith loss Democrat Mike Espy for full six-year term

by Geoff Pender, Mississippi today November 3, 2020


Republican Sen. Cindy Hyde-Smith loss Democrat Mike Espy for full six-year term

by Geoff Pender, Mississippi today November 3, 2020

Incumbent Republican U.S. Sen. Cindy Hyde-Smith to be reelected Tuesday, defeating Democratic challenger Mike Espy, follow to unofficial outcomes tallied through the associated Press.

"What we found out this day is Mississippi is no for sale," Hyde-Smith said, introduce to Espy out-raising and out-spending her campaign at least 2-1. "The just thing much better than beating Mike Espy is beating that twice."

"It was good and angry on the ballot today," Hyde-Smith said a group Tuesday night in ~ the state farming Museum, where dozens the her supporters gathered for a watch party. "It was protecting the resides of the unborn ... It to be protecting our 2nd Amendment rights.

"... God is so good," Hyde-Smith continued. "He has detailed ... That looks prefer President trump is in pretty great shape tonight, too."

Republican Gov. Tate Reeves presented Hyde-Smith at her win party and also predicted other GOP wins Tuesday night.

"Not just are we in Mississippi electing a conservative come the U.S. Senate, however electing someone to go earlier to Washington and also still be in the bulk in the United states Senate," Reeves said, "and that"s critically important."

Hyde-Smith, 61, is a cattle farmer, previous state agriculture commissioner and also a previous state senator. She offered as a Democrat for lot of she time in the Legislature before switching parties in 2010 before her statewide operation for agriculture commissioner.

Espy, 66, is an attorney and also former U.S. Secretary of agriculture in the Clinton management and former U.S. Representative native 1987-1993. He to be the an initial African American to represent Mississippi in Congress since Reconstruction.


The race was a rematch. Espy and also Hyde-Smith squared off in a 2018 special election after Hyde-Smith was temporarily appointed come the Senate chair by Gov. Phil Bryant after the late Sen. Thad Cochran resigned. Hyde-Smith ultimately won that race, in a runoff, 53.6% come Espy"s 46.4%. The 2018 one-of-a-kind election generated huge turnout for an election held in a non-presidential year with much more than 800,000 voting, however the turnout to be much much less than the estimated 1.3 million that voted this year.

This year"s rematch was not intended to it is in competitive, through Mississippi among the reddest states in the country and also Donald trump card atop the ticket and also Hyde-Smith being among his staunchest supporters in the Senate. Riding one apparent huge lead, Hyde-Smith ran a low-key campaign, with few open-to-the-public appearances. She refused to conflict Espy even as he submarine the airwaves with ads and had a large, well-funded field operation.

The Espy campaign, which followed strict COVID-19 guidelines, held an understated post-election occasion with a minimal number of attendees in ~ the Mississippi 2 Museums Tuesday night. Together it became apparent that Espy would not succeed, the mood became an ext somber, but most that the small group the attendees continued to be until what to be the bitterness end.

A subdued Espy told the news media after ~ the gyeongju was called that he believed he ran the ideal campaign he could, but a strong showing by the president in Mississippi helped carry Hyde-Smith come victory.

Thanking his staff, volunteers and supporters, Espy said, “I think us ran a good race. I recognize I left it all on the field…We did all we might do to success this race, however it was no enough.”

Espy congratulated Hyde-Smith, but did not earlier away from a common theme native his project that his opponent was an ineffective senator.

“She winner tonight. I congratulate her,” that said. “She will carry out what she will do…I quiet think she is stop Mississippi back, yet that opinion did not prevail.”

Espy, who elevated a document amount the money because that a democratic candidate in the state, claimed he left one infrastructure, consisting of data and other information, that have the right to be beneficial to aid the struggling state democratic Party.

“We built an infrastructure. We built a bridge,” that said. “Even though ns was no able come cross the bridge, rather after me will certainly be may be to.”

Campaign Manager Joe O’Hearn said, “I think Mike has constructed something special here that put Mississippi ~ above the map together a battleground state."

The race received scant nationwide attention till late in the cycle, after ~ Espy showed up to gain some momentum and the national autonomous Party apparatus detailed him some eleventh-hour financial support.

Espy"s campaign outraised Hyde-Smith for most of the election cycle — unheard of because that a Mississippi Democrat against an incumbent GOP senator. The final tally is intended to show him leading at the very least 2-1 in fundraising. Espy was buoyed through a nationwide flood of cash to democratic congressional candidates, and the campaign"s last full finance reports before Tuesday showed Espy had actually raised nearly $9.3 million as of Oct. 14. Hyde-Smith had raised simply under $3 million.

This article very first appeared top top Mississippi Today and is republished below under a an imaginative Commons license.

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Geoff Pender offer as an elderly political reporter, working carefully with Mississippi Today management on editorial strategy and investigations. Pender brings 30 years of political and government reporting endure to Mississippi Today. He to be political and also investigative editor in ~ the Clarion Ledger, where he also penned a well-known political column. He previously served as an investigative reporter and political editor in ~ the sunlight Herald, wherein he was a member the the Pulitzer Prize-winning team because that Hurricane Katrina coverage. Initially from Florence, Mississippi, Pender is a journalism graduate the the university of southerly Mississippi and has received numerous awards throughout his career for reporting, columns and freedom of details efforts.

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Bobby Harrison, Mississippi Today’s an elderly capitol reporter, consists politics, government and also the Mississippi State Legislature. He also writes a weekly news analysis which is co-published in papers statewide. A indigenous of Laurel, Bobby join our team June 2018 after working for the phibìc Mississippi everyday Journal in Tupelo due to the fact that 1984. He is chairman of the Mississippi Capitol press Corps Association and works with the Mississippi State college Stennis academy to organize push luncheons. Bobby has actually a bachelor"s in American studies from the university of southern Mississippi and has received multiple awards indigenous the Mississippi press Association, consisting of the bill Minor best Investigative/In-depth Reporting and also Best commentary Column.