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Hyde-Smith will accept U.S. Senate appointment at Wednesday ceremony in Brookhaven

State agriculture commissioner Cindy Hyde-Smith will become Mississippi’s first female U.S. senator Wednesday, accepting the job at a ceremony at the old Brookhaven train depot at noon, according to numerous sources.

Hyde-Smith, a Brookhaven native and former state senator, will fill the vacant term left by the retirement of Sen. Thad Cochran effective April 1. She will ascend to the seat on appointment from Gov. Phil Bryant and hold the position until a special election in November.

In that election, she will face off against state Sen. Chris McDaniel, who recently announced he was abandoning the race to challenge U.S. Sen. Roger Wicker and will instead fight for Cochran’s seat. His supporters have called for Bryant to appoint him to the seat, but the governor was clear that will not happen.

Hyde-Smith was elected in 2011 after serving three terms as a state senator. She had little trouble winning over her home county, taking 70 percent of the vote here. Across the state, she won about 58 percent of the vote. She was easily re-elected in 2015.