Late this afternoon Dylan Scott reported on the quite odd story of how a close ally of Senate challenger Chris McDaniel had ended up locked in the Courthouse where ballots are stored at around 2 am the morning after primary night. Well, things seem to have gotten a good deal more interesting over the last six hours or so. Now it turns out that one of the two other people with Janis Lane, President of the Central Mississippi Tea Party, was none other than an actual campaign official with the McDaniel campaign. And there’s more.
According to a late report from the Clarion Ledger, the campaign official is Scott Brewster, former state campaign coordinator for Newt Gingrich’s presidential bid in 2012 and now the McDaniel campaign’s coalition director.
More notably, the Hinds County Sheriff’s office seems a good deal more suspicious than it did this afternoon. At the time, they had taken a report but that there was no investigation of the incident. They weren’t given clean bills of health but their statements and actions gave some credence to Lane’s claim that the whole thing was just an unfortunate misunderstanding.
In the new Clarion Ledger story, however, the tune has changed markedly. Now there is an investigation and apparently conflicting stories from the three in question about just how they ended up in the courthouse. Othor Cain, a spokesman for the Sheriff’s department told the Clarion Ledger: “There are conflicting stories from the three of them, which began to raise the red flag, and we’re trying to get to the bottom of it. No official charges have been filed at this point, but we don’t know where the investigation will lead us.”
And it gets better: Brewster was actually the one on the McDaniel campaign who seemed to know the most about the “Constitutional Clayton” nursing home break-in.
I confess it’s difficult to know what’s going on here. It’s plenty suspicious for political fodder and an actual investigation definitely gives the story legs. But is it actually conceivable that they were trying to tamper with the ballots? It’s hard to imagine just what they would have been trying to accomplish or what they thought they were going to get away with. But again, these folks are out of the same milieu as the folks who thought the nursing home break-in was a hot idea. So there’s really no telling.