The Kappa Delta Ole Miss team for Sen. Thad Cochran was ready to go Saturday in Hernando. Are you ready? All photos by Andy Knef A contingent of Ole Miss volunteers traveled to Hernando, Miss., Saturday to wave signs, shake hands and generally give their viewpoint on why voting Tuesday and electing Sen. Thad Cochran to return to the U.S. Senate is so vital for Mississippi.
The northern Mississippi city was bustling as the famous Farmer’s Market was in full swing and the streets and sidewalks were busy with activity. The volunteers handed out literature explaining specific accomplishments that Sen. Cochran had brought to life for DeSoto County and the rest of the state.
Among the volunteers were a group of dedicated seniors from the Kappa Delta sorority.
Here are some images from the day’s events and comments from the volunteers on why they were willing to give up their Saturday and travel out of Oxford to campaign for Sen Cochran. Their insights are notable coming from young people who are concerned with the damage that apathy about the political process can generate.
The team of volunteers receive their final instructions from leader Steve Vassallo in Oxford before loading up and heading to Hernando. Jessica Bunch and Kierston Cook show their enthusiasm for Sen. Cochran. Jessica, is a senior English major who says, “The challenges we’re facing as a nation and a state means we need someone with experience, not someone who may not get along with his colleagues.” Kierston, a senior majoring in Integrated Marketing and Communications, says, “I made the trip because I wanted to get involved in the political process. I hope I can encourage my classmates to be good citizens and vote. Sen. Cochran is great for education and he needs the vote of my generation.” From left, Gee Quiondrya, Skylar Ogelsby, Steve Vassallo and Hannah Drew Aldrich show their patriotism and commitment to Sen. Cochran. Sklyar, daughter of Cochran volunteers Gene and Sue Ogelsby from South Haven, was the youngest Cochran volunteer. Gee, an Exercise Science major from Clarksdale, wants to reminds everyone, “That every vote counts.” Hannah Drew, a Political Science major, says, “Mississippi has been well served by Sen. Cochran over the past 42 years and we need his experience more than ever.” Sue and Gene Ogelsby from South Haven have four children and they say their support of Sen. Cochran is heavily influenced by his great work in the advancement of Mississippi schools. “It’s all about the children,” says Gene, a self-employed air conditioning technician. “As parents with four kids, it’s very important to us that our state gets its fair share of Federal funding for education. We think it’s a terrible idea to abolish the Department of Education.” Emory Smith just graduated from Ole Miss in Public Policy Leadership and plans to get her MBA here. She is from Natchez, Miss., and says it’s vital that Sen. Cochran wins this election on Tuesday. “I think Thad has done so much for our state and I wanted to be part of a group that helps him win,” she said. “This race is one of the most important in my short experience with Mississippi politics.” Kierston and Jessica are telling everyone they meet about Thad’s accomplishments. Even this less-than-engaged non-voter. Lee Blair DeSoto County field rep for the Cochran campaign and Steve Vassallo, Lafayette County campaign head, pose in front of the Hernando Courthouse, site of the wildly popular Hernando Farmer’s Market that attracts vendors from Oxford. Ole Miss volunteers for Sen. Cochran work hard in the hot sun generating support. Kate Wallace, an Ole Miss grad and current managing editor of HottyToddy.com, has lots of political experience and is proud to support the Cochran campaign. Hannah Drew plans to be a college professor and Gee has her sights set on a career as a physical therapist. Both were delighted to pound the pavement for Sen. Cochran. These ladies said way more than 60 percent of the responses they received were positive for Thad. As for those very occasional single-digit comebacks, they’re just saying Ole Miss is No. 1. Kelsey White is an elementary education major who says we need Sen. Cochran in Washington to fight for our young Mississippi students. The Corinth, Miss., native was all smiles on a hot day. Our Ole Miss political troopers weren’t afraid to go right up to a car window in support of Sen. Cochran. It was a long hot day, but enthusiasm and commitment seemed to have made a difference in the campaign. DeSoto County is looking much better for Thad. Wasn’t just the youngsters working hard for Thad. Oxford’s Citizen of the Year Max Hipp, Hernando native and veteran schoolteacher Marsha Shaddock and legendary Oxford attorney Jim Carroll were giving their all for Thad on Saturday. If you think the girls were bold in seeking votes, nothing stops Steve Vassallo! Sen. Cochran runs an honest campaign. This guy won’t be voting no matter how much our volunteers tried to educate him. Truckers for Thad became a theme in Hernando on Saturday thanks to this crew’s hard work. As the team enjoys an after-campaigning lunch, they hope the outcome of Tuesday’s contest will be more enjoyable than the Rebels Saturday performance. A friendly wave and a positive attitude go a long way in politics. All of the volunteers said they believed they could support Sen. Cochran without resorting to negativity. Andy Knef is editor of HottyToddy.com and he was very impressed by the quality, character and commitment of all the Cochran volunteers on Saturday. You can contact Andy about this article at Andy.Knef@hottytoddy.com