Cindy Hyde-Smith talks strategy as she advances to Senate runoff

Cindy Hyde-Smith talks strategy as she advances to Senate runoff
In this year's special election, Mike Espy and Cindy Hyde-Smith will advance to a runoff to fill the seat left by Thad Cochran after he retired April 1.

JACKSON, MS (WLBT) -There’s no break in the campaigning for Republican Cindy Hyde-Smith. She’s hoping GOP voters will turn out in full force the Tuesday after Thanksgiving.

“We are going to keep the faith,” Hyde-Smith said on election night. “We are going to stand strong. We’re going to follow where God leads us and we’re going to be victorious in three weeks.”

The celebration of advancing to the runoff is quickly met with the reality that Republicans have a centralized focus moving forward -- uniting.

Republican challenger Chris McDaniel also called for his supporters to rally around Hyde-Smith in his concession speech.

“Mr. Espy has no business being anywhere near the U.S. State Senate,” said McDaniel.

“We’ve got to row this boat in the same direction," noted Hyde-Smith. "And those of us with conservative values, we’ve got to make sure that nothing happens other than to elect a conservative Republican to this seat.”

Meanwhile, Hyde-Smith is still getting pressure from Mike Espy to debate before voters return to the polls. She previously said she would debate if it came down to a runoff with Espy.

Here’s what she said Wednesday.

“I enjoy debates,"said Hyde-Smith. "I really do. Those are fun for me. So, we’re taking a look at that. With me being in session part of the time, it’s certainly a planning thing. So, maybe we could get that worked out. But we’ll let you know when that happens.”

While not in D.C., Hyde-Smith expects to continue traveling the state in what’s been dubbed as the MAGA wagon that features a large photo of her with the President on the side of the bus. She’s also expecting a return POTUS visit.

“Don’t be surprised at all if President Trump comes back," added Hyde-Smith. "I just got a really sweet call on my telephone a few minutes ago from Ivanka Trump. So, they are really getting behind me and we’re going to do what it takes to make sure everybody’s energized and we’ve got a lot of planning to do.”

Copyright 2018 WLBT. All rights reserved.