Trump may return to Mississippi before runoff

President Trump may be headed back to Mississippi as the runoff election between Incumbent Senator Cindy Hyde-Smith (R) and former Congressman Mike Espy (D) approaches.

A new report from Politico states that the President may return to Mississippi the night before the election, November 26th. President Trump made Mississippi one of many campaign stops ahead of the midterms, but this would be his first rally after the elections in which Republicans held the Senate, but Democrats gained control of the House.

The Senate’s majority is slim following the midterms, meaning that with Mississippi’s seat in question, a lot of national attention will be placed on the race between Hyde-Smith and Espy. Hyde-Smith was appointed by Governor Bryant in wake of Thad Cochran’s retirement and was endorsed by President Trump in August.

In last Tuesday’s election, Hyde-Smith and Espy both grabbed around 40% of the vote, leaving the remaining 20% up in the air for November 27th’s runoff. After failing to qualify for the runoff, challenger Chris McDaniel (R) did call for his supporters to rally behind Hyde-Smith.

Related:  County results in Special Senate Election

During his October rally in Southaven, Trump discussed Hyde-Smith’s 100% voting record with his agenda as he brought her to the stage.

“She has always had my back, she has always had your back. A vote for Cindy is a vote more me, and to make America great again,” Trump exclaimed.

Related: Trump looks ahead to November during rally

The President’s visit would be on the heels of a recent controversy after a video surfaced of the Senator using a phrase referring to a public hanging during a campaign event in early November.

Related: Hyde-Smith, Espy respond to public hanging comment

Her campaign has released a statement after public backlash stating that the response has been overblown.

“In a comment on Nov. 2, I referred to accepting an invitation to a speaking engagement. In referencing the one who invited me, I used an exaggerated expression of regard, and any attempt to turn this into a negative connotation is ridiculous,” the statement said. 

Governor Bryant and other prominent Republicans have stood by her, but Democrats, including Espy, have denounced the comments.

“They have no place in our political discourse, in Mississippi, or our country,” Espy said. “We need leaders, not dividers, and her words show that she lacks the understanding and judgment to represent the people of our state.

The Politico report also states that The National Republican Senatorial Committee plans to spend over $1 million on campaign ads for Hyde-Smith ahead of the runoff.

News Mississippi will update this story as more information becomes available on President Trump’s possible return to Mississippi.