Mississippi senator won't comment on 'hanging' remark
JACKSON, Miss. (AP) - A Republican U.S. senator in Mississippi says she won't answer questions about a "public hanging" comment she made at a campaign event.
Sen. Cindy Hyde-Smith said in response to repeated questions Monday that she issued a statement Sunday and has nothing to add.
A video published online Sunday shows Hyde-Smith at a Nov. 2 campaign stop in Tupelo praising someone by saying: "If he invited me to a public hanging, I'd be on the front row."
Hyde-Smith said Sunday it was an "exaggerated expression of regard" for a rancher who invited her to speak and "any attempt to turn this into a negative connotation is ridiculous."
Mississippi has a history of racially motivated lynchings of African-Americans.
Hyde-Smith faces Democrat Mike Espy, who is black, in a Nov. 27 runoff.
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