Senator Cindy Hyde-Smith's response to whether she regrets racist comments: 'I'm a cowgirl'

Mississippi Senate incumbent Cindy Hyde-Smith (R) didn’t use the opportunity of an election win to express regret for making highly controversial statements throughout her campaign, instead saying that she’s a cowgirl who likes western movies. 

When asked whether she regretted any of the racist remarks about public hangings and voter suppression, she said that she’s apologized and wants to move forward, then offered the following explanation:

“I’m a cowgirl and when a cowgirl references western movies that I’ve seen hundreds of, and somebody twists it, that’s just it, you’ve gotta roll with the punches.”

Hyde-Smith did apologize after joking that she’d be in the “front row” to watch a local rancher get publicly hanged, but insisted that her words had been twisted for “political gain.” She didn’t issue an apology after implying that voter suppression was a “great idea” during a campaign stop at a local university.

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Senator Cindy Hyde-Smith (L) stands on stage with US President Donald Trump at a 'Make America Great Again' rally at Landers Center in Southaven, Mississippi, on October 2, 2018. (Photo by MANDEL NGAN / AFP) (Photo credit should read MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images)
UNITED STATES - JUNE 14: Sen. Cindy Hyde-Smith, R-Miss., leaves the Capitol after a vote on Thursday, June 14, 2018. (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)
President Donald Trump and Sen. Cindy Hyde-Smith, R-Miss., hug during a rally in Tupelo, Miss., Monday, Nov. 26, 2018. (AP Photo/Thomas Graning)
WASHINGTON, DC - JULY 25: Sen. Cindy Hyde-Smith (R-MS) greets Supreme Court nominee Judge Brett Kavanaugh, in her office on Capitol Hill, on July 25, 2018 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Al Drago/Getty Images)
President Donald Trump points as the walks with Sen. Cindy Hyde-Smith, R-Miss., at Tupelo Regional Airport, Monday, Nov. 26, 2018, in Tupelo, Miss. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)
WASHINGTON, DC - MAY 16: EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt, acknowledges Sen. Cindy Hyde-Smith (R-MI) after arriving at a Senate Appropriations Subcommittee hearing on Capitol Hill, May 16, 2018 in Washington, DC. The Subcommittee is hearing testimony on the proposed budget estimates for FY2019 for the Environmental Protection Agency. (Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images)
Sen. Cindy Hyde-Smith, R-Miss., speaks at a rally with President Donald Trump at Tupelo Regional Airport, Monday, Nov. 26, 2018, in Tupelo, Miss. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)
Incumbent Republican Senator Cindy Hyde-Smith greets supporters at a Make America Great Again rally at the airport in Tupelo, Mississippi on November 26, 2018 (Photo by Jim WATSON / AFP) (Photo credit should read JIM WATSON/AFP/Getty Images)
Senator Cindy Hyde-Smith peaks out from behind a curtain before a rally with US President Donald Trump at Landers Center Ð Arena in Southaven, Mississippi, on October 2, 2018. (Photo by MANDEL NGAN / AFP) (Photo credit should read MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images)
UNITED STATES - JUNE 26: Sens. Cindy Hyde-Smith, R-Miss., and Roger Wicker, R-Miss., talk before the Senate Policy luncheons in the Capitol on June 26, 2018. (Photo By Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)
UNITED STATES - MAY 8: Sen. Cindy Hyde-Smith, R-Miss., arrives in the Capitol on Tuesday, May 8, 2018. (Photo By Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call)
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“It’s ok to still have a sense of humor in America isn’t it?” she instead said in a now-deleted tweet. “These students enjoyed a laugh with Cindy despite out of state social media posts trying to mislead Mississippians.”

Not everyone agreed. Several big organizations asked her campaign to return their donations, a Mississippi Rhodes scholar labeled her a “white supremacist” and nooses were hung outside the Mississippi State Capitol one day before Tuesday’s runoff election “to remind people that times haven’t changed.”

Hyde-Smith still managed to defeat Democratic challenger Mike Espy despite the controversies. 

  • This article originally appeared on HuffPost.
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