Heath issues causing speculation on Cochran's future - MSNewsNow.com - Jackson, MS

Heath issues causing speculation on Cochran's future

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WASHINGTON, D. C (Mississippi News Now) -

Thad Cochran’s health has become national news in recent months.

Missing time on Capitol Hill for what his staff called a urinary tract infection, Republicans feared he may miss the big vote on tax reform.

Further reports of Cochran appearing frail leading to speculation Cochran would step down early this year, and by Mississippi law, avoid a hastily called special election.

"I’ll let that be Senator Cochran’s decision when anything might be talked about regarding his own personal healthcare," said Governor Phil Bryant.

State statute leaves Governor Phil Bryant to send an interim appointee to Washington.

A recent article from Politico speculates that could be U.S Representative Gregg Harper, Lieutenant Governor Tate Reeves, or Secretary of State Delbert Hosemann.

Cochran, by staying in office past January 1, would not have a permanent replacement chosen by voters until the November general election. The same day Senator Roger Wicker’s seat will be on the ballot.

The winner in November would finish Cochran’s term through 2020. Yet, the senator’s office said Cochran is returning to Washington for the new senate session, and "despite speculation otherwise, Senator Cochran will continue his work for Mississippi and our nation".

The full statement from Senator Cochran's office says, 

Senator Cochran enjoyed the Christmas holidays in Mississippi and will return to Washington for the new Senate session, which begins Wednesday.  Despite speculation otherwise, Senator Cochran will continue his work for Mississippi and our nation.

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