Cochran/McDaniel race dredges up ghosts of the past

posted at 2:31 pm on April 12, 2014 by Jazz Shaw

The Mississippi Senate GOP primary race unfolding now between Senator Thad Cochran and state senator Chris McDaniel has put me in mind of a conversation that I had with Ed Morrissey back in the days when he was still running Captain’s Quarters. I had asked him, only half in jest, whether he was considering a run for office himself. Ed indicated that it would probably be a bad idea, given the length of his “paper trail.” If you spend enough time either writing, talking on the radio or appearing on television, you’re bound to eventually toss out a couple of clunkers which could come back to haunt you in a heated political campaign.

It turns out that the Cochran – McDaniel race is cranking up the temperature, and opponents of the challenger have dug up clips from a conservative talk radio show called “The Right Side” – featuring McDaniel – which aired from 2004 until 2007. And some of the ones revealed so far seem to be… well, you can judge for yourselves.

Discussing whether to pay the descendants of slaves, Mr. McDaniel said, “If they pass reparations, and my taxes are going up, I ain’t paying taxes.”

On Mexico: “Why don’t we all immigrate south, let’s go to Mexico…You know, a dollar bill can buy a mansion in Mexico. And I think we all get together, go down there, build us a studio for like 26 pesos, uh and you know, put on a radio show right there in Mexico. Live the rest of our lives there.”

Asked by someone else in the studio, “Do we have to learn Spanish?” Mr. McDaniel replied, “Yes, regrettably…You’ll have to learn just enough to ask where the bathroom is. Baños. Baños. That’s what you say.”

Mr. McDaniel then asked someone to translate, “Do you have a sister?” “What about mamacita?” he offered. “Mamacita works….I’m an English-speaking Anglo. I have no idea what it means, actually, but I’ve said it a few times, just for, you know, fun. And I think it basically means, ‘Hey, hot mama.’ Or, you know, ‘You’re a fine looking young thing.’”

Buzzfeed dug up this one, regarding a female Libertarian candidate running for Governor.

“It’s so interesting to see this woman basically using her boobies to — I shouldn’t have said that — using her breasts to run for office. And if that is not the most typical libertarian platform, I have no idea what is. The only thing that could make the campaign more libertarian is a heroin needle in her arm.”

Have these types of revelations had any effect on the McDaniel campaign’s prospects? Depends who you ask. The latest polling available in the race holds both good news and bad news for the challenger. The good news is that he has narrowed the gap with Cochran. The bad news is that the gap is still pretty darned wide.

According to Harper polling, released Monday, Mississippi Sen. Thad Cochran continues to lead his Republican primary challenger Chris McDaniel. Cochran leads McDaniel 52-35 percent, a net +7 percent gain for McDaniel since mid-December when it was found Cochran leading 54-31 percent.

The thing to remember here is that – as any honest pollster will admit – polling a primary race is notoriously difficult. Turnout for a primary in a non-presidential race year tends to run dismally low, and the lower the turnout, the harder it is to predict the results. In that regard, McDaniel may see some light at the end of the tunnel, since the same poll shows him leading 53-35 among self-identified Tea Party voters and by a 45-44 margin among those describing themselves as “very conservative.” If the turnout is indeed extremely low, these are the folks who will be the most motivated to show up on primary day.

This radio show history is going to be a problem, though. Democrats and the media (but I repeat myself) will be drooling over a chance to pour through the tapes and transcripts of the shows and shove whatever juicy quotes they can find in McDaniel’s face, along with asking every other Republican candidate in the country to comment on them. (Shades of Todd Akin, here. And I think Christine O’Donnell eventually came to regret all those shows she did with Bill Maher.) I assume that any competent political staff would have anticipated this and already has the tapes and transcripts ready so they could respond. If that’s the case – and this may sound crazy – maybe they should just yank off the bandage, release them all now, and put the issue behind them. Otherwise this is starting to look like too much of a goldmine for the Democrats, assuming that McDaniel somehow closes the margins and makes it to the general election.


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He’s DOA. Non-starter.

Raquel Pinkbullet on April 12, 2014 at 2:38 PM

OT – this title must pain ABC, a lot.

Schadenfreude on April 12, 2014 at 2:44 PM

ABC title – Nevada Cattle Rancher Wins ‘Range War’ With Feds

Schadenfreude on April 12, 2014 at 2:45 PM

It’s Mississippi Jazz,aint no democrat gona win down there.

celtic warrior on April 12, 2014 at 2:50 PM

“honest pollster?” Isn’t this an oxymoron, like “honest journalist?”

Just tell me what result you want. I’ll develop a sampling and word the question(s) in a way so that you will get your result. And, if that doesn’t work, we’ll result to weighting.

bw222 on April 12, 2014 at 2:50 PM

OT

Kramatorsk, Krasni Liman, and Slaviansk police stations in the eastern Ukraine have been stormed by well-armed gunmen.

Kiev’s losing control over police forces across eastern Ukraine. 30% fired in Kharkov for “sabotage,” occupations & defections in Donetsk. - maxseddon

“the liberation of Southeast Ukraine has begun.”

Looks like the beginning of the Russian move into the Ukraine. Perhaps over the weekend.

Meanwhile the feds have backed off at the Bundy ranch.

sharrukin on April 12, 2014 at 2:57 PM

ABC title – Nevada Cattle Rancher Wins ‘Range War’ With Feds

Schadenfreude on April 12, 2014 at 2:45 PM

For now. They don’t give up. Ever.

trapeze on April 12, 2014 at 2:57 PM

For now. They don’t give up. Ever.

trapeze on April 12, 2014 at 2:57 PM

True, too inflammatory for the 2014 election and Harry, the thug.

Schadenfreude on April 12, 2014 at 3:02 PM

He’s DOA. Non-starter.

Raquel Pinkbullet on April 12, 2014 at 2:38 PM

Maybe but not because of the comments quoted in the post.

whbates on April 12, 2014 at 3:04 PM

It is too early to pass final judgment on this race or McDaniel, but the weakness of the so-called “Tea Party candidates” (although the Tea Party endorsed or opposed no candidates in any race, it’s just individuals and groups taking the name for their own purposes) has been lack of vetting.

A guy or gal or witch checks the right boxes on the issues checklist, and people rush to support them without doing the necessary background check. And it needs to be done with a healthy dose of skepticism, looking for the stuff Democrats would dredge up. It’s not pretty, but it is the way you win elections, and losers can’t pass any bills.

→↔→

I don’t know how much faith I have in “MSBusiness” or any business blog that can’t do simple arithmetic:

Cochran leads McDaniel 52-35 percent, a net +7 percent gain for McDaniel since mid-December when it was found Cochran leading 54-31 percent.

The difference between the earlier 23 point gap and the current 17% one is +6 for the challenger, not +7.

Adjoran on April 12, 2014 at 3:13 PM

Why can’t conservatives put up viable candidates against worthless RINO jackasses like Thad Cochran? Pathetic.

Jaibones on April 12, 2014 at 3:16 PM

ABC title – Nevada Cattle Rancher Wins ‘Range War’ With Feds

Schadenfreude on April 12, 2014 at 2:45 PM

Pretty risky there – isn’t this a Banned Topic at Hot Air?

Am I the only one who finds it odd that BLM goes all in, with snipers and armored vehicles and helicopters, and then one day a couple of stories break about the BLM, the “endangered” tortoise, and past land grabs by Harry Reid’s developer friends, and the proximity of this land to another of his cronies’ proposed development, and suddenly the very next day BLM just packs up and leaves?

Adjoran on April 12, 2014 at 3:17 PM

ARE YOU FRICKING KIDDING ME????? ANOTHER POST “NOT ABOUT” THE PEOPLE’S STAND AGAINST OUR GOVERNMENT????????!!!!!!

Jazz….I’m disappointed in you….

lovingmyUSA on April 12, 2014 at 3:23 PM

There could be some very juicy tidbits for democrats in those tapes, but the ones quoted here are pretty tame. Jazz had nothing to say about them in this post which tells you how mild they are.

Wigglesworth on April 12, 2014 at 3:23 PM

WE DON’T FRICKING CARE ABOUT AN OBSURE RACE…WHERE IS THE NEWS ABOUT BUNDY?????

lovingmyUSA on April 12, 2014 at 3:24 PM

lovingmyUSA on April 12, 2014 at 3:23 PM

HA is the premier RINO blog and has been for years.

Wigglesworth on April 12, 2014 at 3:25 PM

True, too inflammatory for the 2014 election and Harry, the thug.

Schadenfreude on April 12, 2014 at 3:02 PM

They’ll seize the rancher’s bank account. I hope he has his money under his mattress.

crankyoldlady on April 12, 2014 at 3:25 PM

I usually don’t complain about HA content, but there’s A LOT going on with the Bundy/BLM standoff.

Why the blackout on HA?

aquaviva on April 12, 2014 at 3:26 PM

Just tell me what result you want. I’ll develop a sampling and word the question(s) in a way so that you will get your result. And, if that doesn’t work, we’ll result to weighting.

bw222 on April 12, 2014 at 2:50 PM

“These are my principles. If you don’t like them, I have others.”

-Groucho Marx

Wethal on April 12, 2014 at 3:29 PM

OT, since we aren’t getting any coverage here, Drudge is reporting that the BLM is backing down in Nevada.

It may be coincidental, but several sources are reporting that Harry Reid is involved in a plan for the BLM to run off the ranchers and give use of this property to a Chinese-backed solar energy outfit.

novaculus on April 12, 2014 at 3:36 PM

OT, since we aren’t getting any coverage here, Drudge is reporting that the BLM is backing down in Nevada.

It may be coincidental, but several sources are reporting that Harry Reid is involved in a plan for the BLM to run off the ranchers and give use of this property to a Chinese-backed solar energy outfit.

novaculus on April 12, 2014 at 3:36 PM

beat me by this much

WryTrvllr on April 12, 2014 at 3:37 PM

C’mon, is ANY of what he said really not true?

msupertas on April 12, 2014 at 3:43 PM

novaculus on April 12, 2014 at 3:36 PM

Don’t forget the idiot running BLM is a HR advisor. These m’uckers are corrupt to the core.

msupertas on April 12, 2014 at 3:45 PM

Ukraine Reporter

Adm.#Kabanenko: #Moscow sources confirmed start war action in #Ukraine If #Ukraine suppresses pro-#Kremlins #Russian troops will be involved

sharrukin on April 12, 2014 at 3:46 PM

HA is covering the story in Nevada, if you consider the comments to be part of HA. :)

But I think there should be a blog or a headline about it.

22044 on April 12, 2014 at 3:52 PM

IF THE NEXT BLOG POST ISN’T ABOUT THE BUNDY RANCH, PICK IT AS THE ONE TO COMMENT ON AND MAKE SURE TO REFERENCE IT TO OTHER COMMENTORS IN OTHER FUTURE POSTS OF TODAY? JUST BECAUSE THE FEDS “BACKED DOWN” DOESN’T MEAN IT WILL ALL GO AWAY. I HOPE THERE IS FOLLOW THROUGH ON WHO’S DOING WHAT TO WHOM AND SUPPORT CONTINUES FOR THE FAMILY.

31giddyup on April 12, 2014 at 3:54 PM

WryTrvllr on April 12, 2014 at 3:37 PM

And Schad beat us both- see above.

novaculus on April 12, 2014 at 3:58 PM

31giddyup on April 12, 2014 at 3:54 PM

BREITBART has a good piece on the history of the case. Not good at linking.

msupertas on April 12, 2014 at 4:02 PM

BREITBART has a good piece on the history of the case. Not good at linking.

msupertas on April 12, 2014 at 4:02 PM

Thank you! ; )

31giddyup on April 12, 2014 at 4:10 PM

Feds Blink—Leave Bundy Ranch Area

novaculus on April 12, 2014 at 4:14 PM

Cliven Bundy’s problem isn’t that he didn’t pay — he did — or that his cattle bother tortoises — they don’t — it’s that he’s not a Reid donor.

aquaviva on April 12, 2014 at 4:15 PM

Please, this stuff is only inflammatory if you’re already a flaming liberal. None of this will hurt him in MS (nor SHOULD it hurt him in the rest of the country, if the country were still sane).

BTW, I live in MS, so this is my primary.

yaedon on April 12, 2014 at 5:42 PM

It is too early to pass final judgment on this race or McDaniel, but the weakness of the so-called “Tea Party candidates” (although the Tea Party endorsed or opposed no candidates in any race, it’s just individuals and groups taking the name for their own purposes) has been lack of vetting.

Adjoran on April 12, 2014 at 3:13 PM

If GOPe or Democratic candidates were “vetted” as thoroughly as Tea Party candidates by the media, they would never win. Pretty much every politician extant has said something so “egregious” that they are unelectable. The difference is that the past comments by conservatives are given top billing for weeks or months while past comments from GOPe or Democrats are buried (at least until after the primaries for the GOPe – see Mitt Romney). And this is completely apart from the fact that many things the media considers egregious violations of humanity are are one or more of the following: 1. popularly held opinions 2. Constitutional 3. TRUE 4. inconsequential or 5. gross misrepresentations of the actual beliefs expressed.

I agree that conservative candidates should be able to handle media jabs and deflect click-bait questions better than they have in the past, but the premise that conservative/libertarian candidates hold unpopular and untenable positions is false and misleading. Also, if the media keeps taking conservatives’ comments out of context or grossly misrepresenting them, then none of this matters, anyway.

yaedon on April 12, 2014 at 5:58 PM

Also, being from MS, I think the situation for McDaniel is much better than the push polling indicates, and I think that Thad’s internal polling has him spooked. He’s been making a lot of ridiculous statements about the Tea Party and McDaniel lately that make him sound desperate.

McDaniel IS NOT Christine O’Donnell OR Aiken. He has been very polished, intelligent, and on point until this moment. I don’t expect that to change. Also, he has a pretty good track record here in MS and there are more and more ads being run against Thad by groups like the Club for Growth. This thing is going to be very, very interesting.

yaedon on April 12, 2014 at 6:05 PM

When Harry Reid’s name came up in the Bundy Ranch controversy…it all went away…hmmmm
BTW, Thad is going to win another term. He will be 82 years old if he finishes it. He’s part of the problem with our government. I will never vote for him again.

d1carter on April 12, 2014 at 6:13 PM

Also, also:

If a candidate understands and supports the Constitution as written (and will vote that way), then their personal views on any number of ancillary issues are fairly irrelevant at this point.

Two candidates illustrate this nicely:

1. Christine O’Donnell has been portrayed as a ding-bat intellectual lightweight who made stupid comments on a (supposed) comedy show. From what I can see, she respects the Constitution and would have reliably voted to uphold it. She was torched by the media, which did their very best to take her down. As a result, she was defeated at the ballot box. I don’t know if she is ding-bat or not, but if she reliably votes for valid Constitutional principles, then I don’t care.

2. Nancy Pelosi has been portrayed as an intellectual elite whose every utterance is wisdom incarnate. She has no regard for the Constitution and is, in fact, a ding-bat. Anyone who has seen her speak can verify that. The media aggressively loves and supports this ding-bat with an still-surprising consistency. As a result, she is continually reelected. I know that she is a ding-bat who reliably votes against the Constitution, and I do care a whole lot.

If right-leaning voters held as closely to their principles as left-leaning voters, then we would have our own ding-bats in Congress to counteract the left’s ding-bats.

yaedon on April 12, 2014 at 6:21 PM

Is there a tea party primary challenger that HotAir hasn’t run a hit piece on?

How about running a hit piece on Cochran for voting to raise our debt ceiling? Passing budgets that increase spending and taxes? Being a reliable establishment rubber stamp? All of his pork and earmarks?

Oh wait, those are meaningless issues. What really matters is what Chris McDaniel said on a radio show 10 years ago. That is what really will affect our lives.

tcufrog on April 12, 2014 at 6:38 PM

In every instance in which a Tea Party candidate has pulled off an upset of a GOP incumbent, they only passed the incumbent in the polls after a late surge very close to election day. Early polling in these primary races should not be seen as dispositive of the outcome.

Moreover, I agree with others that McDaniel has more of a foot-hold in Mississippi, and has Cochran’s people scared, more than the polling indicates. McDaniel’s problem is that he is truly going up against the elite of the GOP establishment (basically, Haley Barbour). They are out to destroy him, and he’s still a relatively green candidate. He’s got some ability, but the key for him is going to be his ability to adapt to the hostile environment created by Cochran’s machine and to stay on message.

Robert_Paulson on April 12, 2014 at 6:59 PM

Oh good another neocon circling the wagon post. People do realize having a talk show is about saying controversial taunting stuff to get ratings right? It seems to me that the neocons are going into overdrive to protect their do nothing tone deaf candidates

Brock Robamney on April 12, 2014 at 7:01 PM

When Harry Reid’s name came up in the Bundy Ranch controversy…it all went away…hmmmm
BTW, Thad is going to win another term. He will be 82 years old if he finishes it. He’s part of the problem with our government. I will never vote for him again.

d1carter on April 12, 2014 at 6:13 PM

Assuming you are from MS, that means something. I am from MS, and I will NEVER vote for Thad again. He’s been there for 42 years and we’re in this big a mess? He’s part of the problem, not the solution. Same goes for any person who’s been in Congress for more than about 10 years. That’s not an absolute figure, but it is a good rule of thumb.

yaedon on April 12, 2014 at 7:46 PM

No one with a brain would be offended by these remarks.

Asked by someone else in the studio, “Do we have to learn Spanish?” Mr. McDaniel replied, “Yes, regrettably…You’ll have to learn just enough to ask where the bathroom is. Baños. Baños. That’s what you say.”

I would be delighted if (illegal) immigrants to the USA would learn English. Even learning enough English to ask where the bathroom is would be an improvement over the attitude many illegal immigrants have about my country.

Why would any Mexican citizen be offended if a US national moved to his/her country and begrudgingly learned Spanish? How is that offensive? It seems to be paying respect to the host country, no?

yaedon on April 12, 2014 at 8:08 PM

This radio show history is going to be a problem, though. Democrats and the media and squishys (but I repeat myself) will be drooling over a chance to pour through the tapes and transcripts of the shows and shove whatever juicy quotes they can find in McDaniel’s face

Fixed it for ya.

peacenprosperity on April 12, 2014 at 11:13 PM

I believe the tea party and the Republican Party need to hold a candidate school. Basically, they have to teach lessons like ” Hey, dumb shit, you don’t say stuff like this.” They’re going to be competing against Democrats who, when they say stupid stuff, it’s not reported. Quotes from this guy are going to be reported and reported and reported until he won’t even recognize what he really wants to accomplish.

If Republicans really believe they can win elections sounding this stupid, we’re all in trouble, The Republicans articulate what Democrats think, better than Democrats, then they end up losing. How’s that working???

bflat879 on April 12, 2014 at 11:42 PM

Way too many people predicting gloom and doom because of a couple of fairly mild comments from the past. But RINOs always seem to be embarrassed by anything that wouldn’t go over well at a Washington cocktail party.

I’ll confirm what yaedon and Robert_Paulson said: don’t assume Thad Cochran is going to win this. In the past, Cochran was pretty near untouchable, but there are a lot of people who are tired of the fossils in the Senate, and are ready to hand Thad Cochran a nice watch and tell him, “Have a happy retirement, but it’s time for you to go.”

From the ads we’re already seeing, I can tell that Cochran is taking this primary challenge quite seriously.

There Goes the Neighborhood on April 13, 2014 at 12:41 AM