Columnists ponder life after Cochran

I believe the storyline for the runnoff between Sen. Thad Cochran and state Sen. Chris McDaniel is clear even without much in the way of campaigning by either candidate.

It goes something like this ... Cochran must do a better job of explaining what he has done for Mississippi and what would happen if McDaniel is elected.

McDaniel has made the theme of his campaign clear: The age of appropriations is over. It appears he will stand on that message and hope for more Washington money to help him get it across.

Cochran is getting help with his message from some fairly unexpected quarters.

First Gail Collins  from the New York Times in a column headlined Let's give Mississippi less: 

(McDaniel)'s been dodging opportunities to criticize the federal relief Mississippi got after Hurricane Katrina. Asked about federal underwriting of flood insurance rates, he told Politico, "The people of the coast have come to depend upon that to a certain extent."It may be up to us to suggest ways the state might want to trim back. What about the cotton farmers? "Their subsidies are even more generous than the usually ridiculous subsidies," said Scott Faber of the Environmental Working Group. From 1995 to 2012, he noted, the state's cotton farmers got $4.6 billion from Washington. The top 1 percent of the subsidy recipients got an average of $4.8 million while the bottom 80 percent got $20,372.

Then John Feehery, one-time communications guy for Republican House Speaker Dennis Hastert who is President of Quinn Gillespie Communications and Director of QGA Government Affairs in a column headlined One Innocuous Tweet And All Hell Breaks Loose:

bIf a state decides to retire the Appropriations Chairman in an election, that state will lose money during the discretionary appropriations process.And other states will gladly compete for that money.

This shouldn’t be a new revelation.  It’s been part of the political process since the start of our Republic.