If the allegations are true, it’s reprehensible. But the problem is that they’re coming from a less than reputable source.
The African-American pastor alleging that he was offered money to buy votes for Thad Cochran was also paid by the reporter for the story. This is both ironic and problematic: If you’re the kind of person who is willing to participate in a vote-buying scheme, isn’t it possible you’d also be the kind of person who is willing to make up a wild story in order to get paid by a reporter?
Another interesting wrinkle is that the person making the allegation claims he received the walking around money to distribute to African-American voters but never got paid the money he was promised for his services (note: Always get paid up front!).
Of course, even if this pastor is telling the truth, the hard part will be proving that a). the people ordering the vote buying were actually from the Cochran campaign, and b). that the number of votes bought would account for the difference in the election. (Let’s assume that a consultant took it upon himself to order this scheme. He might certainly find himself in legal hot water, but would that impact Cochran’s victory?)
From the nursing home scandal (which resulted in an apparent suicide) to the vote-buying allegations, this continues to be an interesting race. And there’s no telling when it will actually end. Rather than bow out gracefully and live to fight another day, McDaniel and his allies appear to be going “all in” in an attempt to overturn Cochran’s victory.
As such, they will either shock the political world by proving massive voter fraud — or ensure that any political future McDaniel might have hoped to salvage is over.
I’m betting on the latter, but in politics, anything can happen.