Primary challenging party

As the campaign heat intensifies and garners national attention, so does internal party strife.  The Republican Primary contest between incumbent Sen. Thad Cochran and state Sen. Chris McDaniel is not only stressing the candidates but also the Republican Party.

Tea Party Republicans within the state are calling for state GOP chair Joe Nosef to resign after he spoke to NBC News and provided the media with marginalizing comments about U.S. Senate challenger Chris McDaniel.  The press release illustrates the growing divide in the state’s Republican Party between so-called establishment Republicans such as Sen. Cochran and former Gov. Hale Barbour and Tea Party supporters which endorse McDaniel.

For his part, Nosef defended himself with the following statement:

Anyone who has paid close attention to our US senate primary knows that I’ve not only stayed neutral with regard to the candidates but also worked relentlessly against efforts to divide our party. I continue to receive encouragement in this effort to promote unity from our GOP elected officials, voters across the state, members of both campaigns, as well as very active, long-term tea party members. I also appreciate the good people across our state who make up the lifeblood of the tea party and have enjoyed working with them for years. I am grateful for their support. I have a great working relationship with them in all corners of our state and look forward to working together in this year’s campaigns and into the future.

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