Thad Cochran has declared victory in Tuesday’s runoff election, but Chris McDaniel has yet to concede. Friday in Harrison County, volunteers for McDaniel examined the results of Tuesday’s runoff for any irregularities in an effort to uncover fraudulent voting practices in Tuesday’s election.
Specifically, the volunteers are looking for people who voted in the Democratic primary on June 3rd and then voted again in the Republican runoff on June 24th. The search began at around 2:30 Friday afternoon at the Harrison County Circuit Clerk’s Office. Two members of the South Mississippi Tea Party began pouring over the poll books from Tuesday’s runoff. Phil Harding of the South Mississippi Tea Party says, “Right now, we're looking at four precincts, but we've asked for all the precincts in Harrison County.”
Gayle Parker, Harrison County Circuit Clerk, says, “We had a request for public information in Tuesday’s runoff, and we have complied with that.” The poll books were used by poll workers to determine if voters were eligible to participate in the runoff. The books have two columns, one that shows if a voter voted in the Democratic primary, and one shows if they voted in the Republican runoff. If the same person has check marks in both columns, then there could be a big problem.
Harding also says, “Yes, we do have some interesting annotations. There does appear that there may be some who voted in both the Democrat primary and the Republican primary.” After the day was over, the McDaniel volunteers say they found a small number of irregularities. They plan to continue their search Monday and then turn over their findings to McDaniel's legal team. If it turns out people did vote in both parties’ primary, then there could be serious consequences.
Parker closes, “What it is, is fraud, election fraud, and that will go to the courts, the circuit courts.” At this point, the volunteers don't know for sure if the irregularities they found are a clear sign of fraud, but in an election as close as Tuesday's runoff, the volunteers don't want to take any chances.
Mississippi's Republican Party could certify the primary results as soon as next week, so the volunteers believe they are working against the clock to challenge those results.