Thad Cochran resigns: Here's what happens next - MSNewsNow.com - Jackson, MS

Thad Cochran resigns: Here's what happens next

U.S. Senator Thad Cochran announced his intention to resign from the U.S. Senate effective April 1, 2018. Source: WLBT Archives U.S. Senator Thad Cochran announced his intention to resign from the U.S. Senate effective April 1, 2018. Source: WLBT Archives
JACKSON, MS (Mississippi News Now) -

U.S. Senator Thad Cochran, Monday, announced his intention to resign from the U.S. Senate effective April 1, creating two Senate races in the Magnolia State this November. 

READ MORE: Thad Cochran to resign from Senate effective April 1

Cochran, who previously served three terms in the House, was first elected to the Senate in 1978, becoming the first Republican in more than 100 years to win a statewide election in Mississippi. He is the tenth-longest serving senator in the nation’s history.

Here’s what will happen to his Senate seat once he leaves office.

  • Governor Bryant will have 10 days to appoint an interim senator. 

The governor’s appointee would serve only until a special election is held. Mississippi is one of 14 states that require that a special election be held to fill a vacancy in the office of U.S. Senator.

According to Mississippi Code 1972, Sec. 23-15-855, the Governor has 10 days, within learning of the vacancy, to set a special election, unless the vacancy occurs during the year of a state or Congressional general election. 

The Governor has not yet received Cochran's resignation letter. 

There is a Congressional general election set for November 6. Republican Senator Roger Wicker is already running for re-election this November. State senator Chris McDaniel has announced he will be challenging Wicker in this race. 

To see the full list of those running the Senate primaries in June, click here.

  • A special election would then be held on Election Day in November to fill the rest of Mr. Cochran’s term, which expires in 2020.

Whoever wins the special election in 2018 would have to run again in 2020 - if he or she chooses.

The next full Senate term would begin in 2021. 

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