Nooses found hanging on grounds of MS state capitol


State and federal investigators are trying to find out who hung seven nooses in trees outside the Mississippi Capitol early Monday, a day before a U.S. Senate runoff that has focused attention on the state's history of racist violence.

"We are hanging nooses to remind people that times have not changed", reads one of the signs, according to the Mississippi Department of Finance and Administration, which oversees the Capitol Police.

A poll conducted last week by RRH Elections shows Republican incumbent Cindy Hyde-Smith with a 10-point lead, at 54-44 percent, over Democratic challenger Mike Espy.

Hyde-Smith has drawn fire for a 2014 photo showing her wearing a replica hat of a Confederate soldier, and a video from last month showing her praising a supporter by saying, 'If he invited me to a public hanging, I'd be on the front row'. MS is preparing for a U.S. Senate runoff Tuesday between Republican Sen.

The resulting uproar triggered a backlash from corporate donors such as Walmart Inc. and Pfizer Inc., which demanded refunds of campaign contributions, and prompted Republicans to mount a rescue operation that included two rallies by President Donald Trump on Monday in an effort to turn out GOP voters.

"We can't afford a senator who embarrasses us and reinforces the stereotypes we've worked so hard to overcome", one ad for the Democrat said.

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"Let us all respond to these despicable acts by voting, working, raising our families, practicing our faith, and pursuing the American dream here in our great state without fear or trepidation and in harmony with our fellow citizens", Hurst said. Cindy Hyde-Smith's campaign to return thousands in donations stemming from her "public hanging" comments. She later apologized for the comment. Officials say they will release pictures of the signs and nooses later Monday. Thad Cochran's six-year term.

Espy has served in Congress and was a secretary of Agriculture under President Bill Clinton.

"I think it'll be a very big day for Cindy, but don't take any chances", President Trump said at the MS rally.

MS is preparing for a Tuesday Senate runoff between Republican Sen.

On judges, immigration, taxes and trade, Ms. Hyde-Smith would back his agenda while Mr. His campaign spokesman, Danny Blanton, said Hyde-Smith's "toxic comments are scaring away the kind of investments our state needs to move forward" and costing MS jobs. If elected, Espy would be the first black person elected to the Senate from the state since the era of Reconstruction.