Former Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour said Wednesday that Sen. Thad Cochran’s win in the bitter primary race in the Magnolia State strengthens the GOP’s chances of keeping the seat in the November election.
Speaking in CNBC’s “Squawk Box,” Mr. Barbour, a former head of the Republican National Committee and major GOP fundraiser, said Mississippi voters chose wisely Tuesday by renominating Mr. Cochran over tea-party-backed state Sen. Chris McDaniel.
Mr. Cochran won the Mississippi runoff race after expanding his base of support with black voters in the wake of the the June 3 primary, which Mr. McDaniel won, but could not collect the 50 percent needed to avoid the runoff race on Tuesday.
Mr. McDaniel, though, refused to concede and told his supporters that there were “irregularities” in the voting.
He attributed the loss to “liberal Democrats” that supported Mr. Cochran and slammed the veteran lawmaker for once again “compromising,” “reaching across the aisle” and “abandoning the conservative” movement in the race. “This is not the party of Reagan. But we are not done fighting, but when we are done, it will be,” Mr. McDaniel said.
“It’s our job to make sure that the sanctity of the vote is upheld,” Mr. McDaniel said. “Before this race ends, we have to be absolutely certain that the Republican primary was won by Republican voters.”