Major League Baseball donated to Hyde-Smith's campaign as favor to McConnell

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The Senate runoff on Tuesday is between Republican senator Cindy Hyde-Smith and Democrat Mike Espy, in a race that has increasingly taken on racial overtones.

On Monday, President Donald Trump held two rallies in the state to support Hyde-Smith and encourage Republicans to get out and vote for her.

Ms Hyde-Smith's campaign meanwhile has critiqued Mr Espy's lobbying work and affiliations with an Ivory Coast dictator.

The president has painted the midterms as a success, pointing to the Senate gains, while arguing that previous presidents lost more House seats.

The Mississippi runoff features Hyde-Smith, who is white, against former congressman Mike Espy, an African American who said his opponent has "rejuvenated old stereotypes" about Mississippi. Mike Espy in the special election runoff after neither cleared 50 percent in the November 6 jungle primary, which saw two Republicans and two Democrats run together on the same ballot.

Photographs from 2014 have surfaced of Hyde-Smith posing with artifacts from the Confederate south, which supported slavery during the 19th C Civil War.

Moore's political standing was undermined by a series of media reports alleging predatory conduct against teenage girls more than 30 years ago, when he was a local prosecutor in his late 30s. Cindy Hyde-Smith's campaign wouldn't mind maybe returning that $6,897.

Trump added that a vote for her is a vote for him.

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Trump's mission will be to rally the faithful toward Hyde-Smith, who has faced campaign setbacks after her comments this month about a "public hanging" seemed to allude to Mississippi's tortured history of lynching of African Americans. History is also on the side of the GOP candidate: the state has not elected a Democratic senator since 1982.

Other companies hoping to avoid the bad PR of associating with a candidate whose remarks were widely understood to be a reference to lynchings include Walmart, Major League Baseball, Union Pacific, Boston Scientific, Pfizer, and AT&T. She said the "public hanging" comment was "an exaggerated expression of regard" for a fellow cattle rancher. She said of her decision to have a child later in life, "At 39 years old, I knew I wanted a child".

That recording showed the senator saying there were some liberals "who maybe we don't want to vote - maybe we want to make it just a little more hard [to vote]". She apologised "to anyone that was offended".

While most candidates being outed like this would be the kiss of political death, political pundits have speculated that MS is likely to consider Smith's racism a perk.

The Democratic candidate Espy has reacted to the unexpected possibility of actual election to office by shifting even further to the right, in an effort to reassure the MS business elite that he will faithfully serve their interests if he wins the runoff. He resigned from the Clinton cabinet over corruption charges, although he was eventually acquitted on all counts.

He said it would be "unfair" to make any connection between the items and Hyde-Smith. "I am an independent person and I will be an independent senator", he said. Which, given that the donation came after she made pro-lynching comments, is rather relevant.

The sign above refers to the case of Willie Jones Jr, a black man who was found hanging from a tree earlier this year.

Later, at a Christmas-themed rally in Biloxi, where Trump emerged on the stage from a chimney, he said that Democrats want to impose an "extreme job-killing agenda" and that a vote for Espy would be a vote for a "Democrat agenda of socialism and open borders".