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Opponent wants Thad Cochran to withdraw from Senate race

By By William F. West / Oct. 1, 2002
community editor
A U.S. Senate candidate is not only challenging Thad Cochran in the Nov. 5 election, he would like the veteran incumbent to stop campaigning right now.
O'Hara, asserting an anti-abortion stance, also claimed Cochran has wavered on the pro-life issue.
Cochran campaign manager Brad Prewitt declined to respond to O'Hara's candidacy, other than to deny that the senator is pro-choice.
Prewitt said Cochran as recently as a year ago considered whether to seek a fifth term before being urged by friends and supporters to continue helping Mississippi by serving another term in the Senate.
Cochran, 64, of Jackson, first won election to Congress from southwest Mississippi in 1972.
In 1978, he won a hotly contested election to replace retiring U.S. Sen. James O. Eastland. Cochran defeated former Gov. William Winter in 1984 and has won re-election since.
O'Hara, 44, a Hattiesburg activist and author, was in Meridian on a campaign swing.
He provided a 100-word sheet that includes calling for the U.S. to stop giving billions in aid to foreign countries, relying more on alternative fuels, providing free college Internet classes and adopting a tort reform plan with caps on lawsuits at $100,000.
A perennial candidate for statewide and federal office, O'Hara said what keeps him going is a dedication to politics inspired by the legacy of President Kennedy.