Legal Scholar Says McDaniel Has A Lot To Prove For Challenge
by Paul Boger on
One of Mississippi's top legal minds says state Senator Chris McDaniel's legal team will have to present a substantial amount of evidence proving voter fraud affected the results of the June 24th, Republican Senate Runoff for him to have any hope of a new, court-ordered election.
Nearly a month after incumbent Senator Thad Cochran won the Mississippi G.O.P. Senate runoff election, Tea Party backed challenger Chris McDaniel has yet to concede the race. McDaniel, who lost by nearly 7,700 votes, has repeatedly claimed voting fraud and other irregularities swung the election in Cochran's in favor.
Speaking at a recent campaign event, McDaniel attorney, Mitch Tyner told supporters that a legal challenge is likely coming soon.
"The challenge must filed with the state party; they have 10 days to do with it what they choose to do with it." Tyner says. "10 Days after that then we will file for judicial review, and that will go before a circuit court in Mississippi. So, we fully expect that we'll be inside of a full trial by August."
Before a judge orders a new election, McDaniel's legal team will first have to prove that there was a substantial amount of voter fraud in last month's runoff. Ed Pittman is the former Chief Justice of the Mississippi Supreme Court.
"The state could decide the issue as to whther or not there is fraud." says Pittman. "Now fraud will have to be substantial. You'd have to, I think, neutralize at least 7,600 votes or however many votes Senator Cochran led by. You's have to find that many votes that had been counted and should not have counted."
McDaniel and his legal team have previously stated that they have found upwards of 10,000 illegal votes cast in the election, but have provided little, to no proof of their existence.
Pittman says if the court deny's McDaniel challenge then he would have few remaining options besides an appeal to the state Supreme Court.
"If you prove that there is a constitutional question, a United State Constitutional question, then it would be decided by the United States Supreme Court." Pittman says. "I don't see at this point that a federal constitution question has been raised. All of the issues that have been suggested can be determined in the party process or in the judicial system of Mississippi."
Pittman went on to say, that if all else fails McDaniel could appeal to the U.S. Senate, and if he proves to them that voting fraud changed the outcome of the election, they could refuse to seat Senator Cochran.