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Senate candidate Chris McDaniel; campaign image
The next senator, or the next Batman villain?
Announcements that Mississippi state officials will be monitoring polling places to ensure no hijinks occur have, in the not-so-distant past, been a good indicator that polling place hijinks are about to occur, so you would be forgiven if you don't quite know how to feel about this:
The Mississippi Secretary of State's Office and the Mississippi Attorney General's office said observers from both offices will be present in Mississippi counties on election day Tuesday.

"Observers from both the Secretary of State’s Office and the Attorney General’s Office will be in Mississippi counties on Election Day," the offices said Monday in a joint statement providing guidance on election day.

Why this reminder from the state that they'll be keeping an eye on things? At issue is tea party support groups like FreedomWorks announcing that they'll be putting "observers" into polling places after (sigh) incumbent senator Thad Cochran appealed to black Americans to vote for him in his primary. Neither the tea partiers nor Cochran challenger Chris McDaniel are warm to the idea for some reason—hint: Mississippi—and so FreedomWorks declared that a little old-fashioned "observing" was needed in order to ensure no Democrats—hint: black people—try and vote in today's Republican primary.

The rather glaring problem with the plan is that state law says you can't do it. Mississippi law does not allow outside groups to station "observers" inside polling places because Damn Good Reasons, so if tea partiers do show up today looking to case the joint for closet Demmycrats they'll be breaking the law and poll officials are supposed to call the police and have them escorted nicely off the premises. Or tased, whatever works. It is also a state law that you can't vote in both the Democratic and Republican primaries, but the state does keep lists of these things so polling officials should be able to muddle through just fine without outside help.

All right, last day, everybody. After today, we won't have to hear about either Thad Cochran or Chris McDaniel again. At least, not until one of them announces their new career as a lobbyist (hint: powerful incumbent) or new craziest person on Fox News.

Originally posted to Hunter on Tue Jun 24, 2014 at 09:14 AM PDT.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

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