In a campaign appearance on Tuesday, embattled Mississippi Sen. Thad Cochran (R) raised eyebrows with what appeared to be an off-color joke about his rural boyhood.
The Jackson Clarion-Ledger reported that Cochran was addressing a group of donors and supporters at Forrest General Hospital in Hattiesburg.
The senator explained his connection to the area, saying that his grandparents lived their whole lives in the area.
“I grew up coming down here for Christmas,” he said. “My father’s family was here. My mother’s family was from rural Hinds County in Utica.”
“It was fun, it was an adventure to be out there in the country and to see what goes on,” he said of his boyhood visits to Hattiesburg. “Picking up pecans, from that to all kinds of indecent things with animals.”
The audience chuckled.
“And I know some of you know what that is,” Cochran said.
Cochran is currently locked in a primary battle with Tea Party challenger Chris McDaniel. Neither man won a decisive victory in the first round of primary voting and are headed for a run-off on June 24.
The bitter contest between the two conservatives has taken bizarre twists and turns. McDaniel supporters were arrested for trespassing into the nursing home where Cochran’s ailing wife is hospitalized with dementia. On the night of the June 3 primary, another group of McDaniel supporters got themselves locked into the county courthouse in what they deny was an attempt to tamper with ballots.
Watch video of Cochran’s remarks, embedded below: