Fourteen plaintiffs have filed a lawsuit in federal court over the June 24 primary election runoff between Senator Thad Cochran and Tea Party challenger Chris McDaniel. One of the plaintiffs, True the Vote, says it has been inundated with reports of voter fraud from across Mississippi.
The lawsuit asks the court to grant immediate access to designated county representatives to inspect the poll books and ballots, give them the review time they are permitted by law, and allow them to uphold their responsibility to Mississippi voters.
Cochran won allegedly by convincing thousands of Black Democrats to cross over and vote for him in the runoff.
- One campaign flyer claimed McDaniel intended to prevent blacks from voting.
- A radio announcement implied that McDaniel was going to defund welfare.
- A Black preacher says the Cochran campaign assured him that McDaniels was a racist and says he was given cash to pay Black Democrats to vote for Cochran.
- Prior to the primary, Mississippi Democratic Party Chairman Rickey Cole posted in Facebook that Democratic Party activists were buying votes for Cochran in at least five counties. “Large sums of cash are being passed around,” Cole said in the Facebook message.
Mississippi has open primaries. In closed primary states, voters may vote only in the primaries of their registered party. In open primary states, each voter has the right to vote in any party’s primary, but may not vote in more than one per race.
McDaniel says his people have already found over 1,500 votes in Hinds County and another 600-800 in Pine Belt in which individuals voted in the Democrat primary, then voted again in the GOP primary. That’s more than 2,000 illegal votes in just two of Mississippi’s 82 counties.
Cochran, who won the primary by only 7,000 votes, called the allegations “baseless and false.”
Major lawsuit over Senate race ‘shenanigans’ – July 1, 2014