November 23, 2020

Oops. Hosemann tells students Thad Cochran had died. ‘He’s very much alive’

Mississippi’s secretary of state incorrectly told college students that Republican former U.S. Sen. Thad Cochran is “deceased.”

The 81-year-old Cochran is alive.

The Clarion Ledger reports Republican Delbert Hosemann spoke Thursday to University of Mississippi journalism students in Oxford.

In a recording sent to the newspaper, one student asked Hosemann how close he and Cochran are. Hosemann replied: “He’s deceased, so I’m not real close.”

He then praised Cochran’s leadership, using the past tense.

Cochran retired from the Senate amid health concerns in 2018 and is living in Oxford. A former chief of staff, Brad White, says he saw Cochran on Thursday “and he’s very much alive.”

Hosemann is running for lieutenant governor. In a statement, he said: “I made an improper comment, and I sincerely apologize.”