Republican Sen. Cindy Hyde-Smith is the projected winner of the Mississippi Senate runoff against former congressman and Agriculture Secretary Mike Espy, according to the Associated Press. Her victory comes to a shock to many people who felt her “public hanging” comment was disgusting and disqualifying.
Hyde-Smith, who was appointed to the Senate earlier this year after GOP Sen. Thad Cochran stepped down, was heavily scrutinized for telling a supporter, "If he invited me to a public hanging, I'd be on the front row.” Hyde-Smith was criticized for making the comment, especially considering Mississippi’s long history of lynching Blacks.
When the Senator came under fire for the racially charged remark, the state’s governor, Phil Bryant, came to her defense by saying people should be more outraged by the millions of Black babies getting aborted every year, which he called “genocide.”
After Hyde-Smith’s victory, a clip of her refusal to take accountability for the statement and Byrant’s remark went viral again. Actress Niecy Nash slammed both politicians for the racist press conference.
“And the winner is ..... Remember Senator Cindy Hyde-Smith who would gladly attend a public lynching from first row? Well, this is her train-wreck of a press conference regarding said sentiments. She was joined by the governor of Mississippi, Phil Bryant.
“Just so we’re clear: a black woman exercising control over her own body without outside government interference has nothing to do with a white government official advocating "public hangings" in a former slave state with a long history of lynching black people,” Nash wrote on Instagram.
Despite making the abhorrent comment, Hyde-Smith was still projected to win in the heavy conservative state. While her win may not have come as a complete shock, people on Twitter still can’t believe a candidate such as herself is successfully running for office in 2018.
(Photos from left: Drew Angerer/Getty Images, Amanda Edwards/Getty Images)