Major League Baseball is trying to take back a donation to Sen. Cindy Hyde-Smith (R-Miss.) made weeks after the politician said she would be “front row” at a “public hanging” if invited by a constituent.
The $5,000 donation, first reported by Popular Info, is dated Nov. 23, according to a Federal Election Commission report. MLB’s Political Action Committee also donated $2,500 to Hyde-Smith in June and September.
But this is the first made after the Republican’s “hanging” comment, made at a Nov. 2 campaign event.
“The contribution was made in connection with an event that MLB lobbyists were asked to attend,” an MLB spokesperson said in a statement Sunday morning, about 12 hours after the donation was . “MLB has requested that the contribution be returned.”
A spokesperson also told Fancred that MLB was not aware of “Cindy Hyde-Smith’s reprehensible comments” when it made the donation, despite the fact that the contribution was made three weeks after her “hanging” remark.
Candidate committees are required to report contributions of $1,000 or more within 48 hours of a donation given less than 20 days and more than 48 hours before the election, according to the FEC.
Hyde-Smith squares off against Democrat Mike Espy, the former Secretary of Agriculture, in a special election Tuesday, which falls within that reporting window.
Last week, during a debate, she apologized to anyone offended by her comments.”.
“Good look @MLB,” relief pitcher Brandon McCarthy, who retired at the end of the 2018 season, tweeted sarcastically Saturday night.
MLB’s PAC typically donates to a wide range of candidates and parties, including Ted Cruz, Marco Rubio, Amy Klobuchar, Bill Nelson, Bob Menendez and both the DCCC and the NRCC.
No teams have an affiliate in Mississippi.
Walmart and AT&T, as well as several other major donors, have also asked for refunds from Hyde-Smith’s campaign. which last week returned a $2,700 donation from a Seattle businessman who was sued for refusing to hire Muslims.
Hyde-Smith was also seen on video talking about suppressing “liberal” voters and a 2014 photo of her showing off Confederate memorabilia recently resurfaced.
Late last week, the Jackson Free Press reported that Hyde-Smith attended an all-white “segregation academy” founded in 1970 to avoid the the Supreme Court’s 1969 ruling.
“Hyde-Smith graduated from Lawrence County Academy in 1977, meaning she would have already been in school elsewhere at the time the academy opened,” according to the newspaper.