- On Tuesday, voters in Mississippi cast ballots to elect two US senators in the same year.
- Republican Roger Wicker was projected to win the race at the top of the ballot.
- And a special election to fill the last two years of retiring Sen. Thad Cochran’s term is headed for a runoff that is scheduled to take place on November 27.
On Tuesday, Mississippi voters were in the unique position of electing two US senators in the same year.
This year, Republican Roger Wicker was projected to win the race at the top of the ballot. He ran against Democratic state Rep. David Baria, as well as Libertarian Party candidate Danny Bedwell and Reform Party candidate Shawn O’Hara.
Democrats invested more money than is typical in the state’s Senate race, but Wicker’s campaign funding still far outpaced Baria’s. The former raised $US6.4 million, while the latter raised just over $US780,000.
The second race on Tuesday’s ballot was a special election to elect someone to serve out the remaining two years of incumbent Sen. Thad Cochran’s term. That race was projected to go to a runoff after the race was too close to call.
Republican Cindy Hyde-Smith ran against Democrat Mike Espy, the former US agriculture secretary under President Bill Clinton; Republican Chris McDaniel, a hardline tea party conservative; and Democrat Tobey Bernard Bartee, a military veteran who ran for office for the first time this year.
Voters will elect a winner during a runoff that’s set to take place on November 27.
According to public filings, Hyde-Smith raised almost $US3 million leading up to Tuesday’s race, while Espy trailed her at nearly $US2 million. McDaniel raised a little over $US583,000 and Bartee raised just over $US4,000.
71-year-old Bill Inman, a Mississippi resident, told The Associated Press that he planned to vote for McDaniel in the special election, calling the candidate an “honest man” who is “not the establishment.”
Dale Bledsoe, a 61-year-old warehouse district specialist in Picayune, Mississippi, said he voted for Baria and Espy in the race at the top of the ballot and the special election, respectively, because he’s also looking for a change.
Bledsoe, who is black, told The Associated Press that he wants his vote to help change Mississippi’s “negative history.”
He added: “If we want to bring about a change, we have to take a stand. I’m hoping by casting my vote and doing things of this nature I’m teaching my grandchildren and children: If you don’t like the way things are, speak up and try to change them.”