McDaniel Campaign Contradicts Itself On Blogger Break-In


By Saturday evening, the timeline of events around when Mississippi state Sen. Chris McDaniel (R) and his campaign were made aware of a blogger breaking into the nursing home where the wife of Sen. Thad Cochran (R-MS) lives haven’t gotten any clearer.

McDaniel’s campaign manager, Mississippi state Sen. Melanie Sojourner (R), reportedly called the Cochran campaign Saturday morning to express outrage that blogger Clayton Thomas Kelly broke into the nursing home to photograph Cochran’s wife, Rose.

The call reportedly happened on Saturday morning at 7:45 a.m. ET. That is before the Cochran connection was made public by the Clarion-Ledger of Mississippi. A Republican aide who listened to the voicemail Sojourner left for Cochran campaign manager Kirk Simms told The Hill that Sojourner said she found out about the break-in on Friday. According to The Hill, Sojourner said she and McDaniel himself strongly disapproved of Kelly’s actions.

The problem is, as the Clarion-Ledger notes, that contradicts other statements by the McDaniel campaign about when they found out about the break-in. When The Hill caught up with McDaniel himself on Saturday morning, about an hour after the Clarion-Ledger published its initial report, McDaniel said he had not heard about Kelly’s arrest.

The Clarion-Ledger also contacted McDaniel campaign communications director Noel Fritsch early Saturday morning about the arrest. Fritsch, in that interview, told the newspaper he did not know anything about the arrest.

Later Saturday, the McDaniel campaign said in a statement that it first learned about the arrest late Friday night.