Or maybe we should call it the ‘Barbour machine’. According to NRO and the FEC, Haley Barbour’s nephew paid a couple of ‘get out the vote’ groups in Atlanta, via his SuperPAC, for ‘phone services’. These local groups are affiliated with a black pastor who is also a Democratic staffer and political strategist and it seems she may have been the key to getting out the black vote for Cochran:
NRO – Meet what appears to be one of the keys to Thad Cochran’s black-turnout operation, Mitzi Bickers.
She is, from all appearances, something of a renaissance woman: She is not only the pastor of Atlanta’s Emmanuel Baptist Church but also a former president of the Atlanta school board, a former construction-company executive, and a Democratic staffer and political strategist with a checkered past. Last year, she left her job as a senior adviser to Atlanta mayor Kasim Reed after news surfaced that she had filed a fraudulent financial-disclosure statement.
In a bizarre turn of events, it seems that Bickers was in the middle of a bitterly contested Republican Senate primary. Two Atlanta-based entities affiliated with Bickers, The Bickers Group and the Pirouette Company, were paid thousands of dollars to make robo-calls on Senator Cochran’s behalf by a super PAC that backed Cochran in his bid for reelection. Documents filed with the Federal Election Commission show that Mississippi Conservatives, the political-action committee run by former Mississippi governor Haley Barbour’s nephew Henry, paid the groups a total of $44,000 for get-out-the-vote “phone services.”
Meanwhile, it appears McDaniel staffers are getting the run around from country clerks who are trying to keep them from checking the voter rolls (h/t: GWP):
Lindsay Krout, an independent contractor working in Mississippi, was barred from reviewing voter rolls in Lafayette County Mississippi Friday morning.
Lindsay said when she went to the Lafayette County courthouse this morning and was forced to wait for an hour. Then the county clerk told her the Secretary of State’s office said the county had to redact the Social Security number and addresses from the voter rolls. The clerk said it will take until Wednesday to redact the information. And, the county will charge McDaniel supporters for the extra work.
Mississippi law states that the clerk must allow public viewing of the election documentation:
Lindsay said McDaniel supporters in Lowndes County and Lauderdale County faced similar pushback from the local officials. The clerks also said they would have to schedule the time so county officials could be present.
I’m crossing my fingers that they can find enough votes in enough counties that aren’t trying to block them from checking voter rolls.