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Thad Cochran gets lost in Senate building, winds up at Democratic event

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Sen. Thad Cochran, R-Miss., got lost on his way to a Senate Republican luncheon on Tuesday and ended up at the Democrats' gathering instead, the Hill reported.

The Mississippi senator, who recently won an intensely ugly primary election against Tea Party-backed candidate Chris McDaniel, apparently forgot where he was going while navigating the halls of Congress.

“After exiting a Senate elevator on the wrong floor” Cochran re-boarded, the report notes. “He then found the right floor but turned away from the Senate GOP luncheon, a few yards from the elevator, to stroll the opposite direction, arriving at the Democrats' weekly gathering a few hallways away.”

Cochran then entered the wrong room and chatted away with Sen. Mark Pryor, D-Ark., until someone asked the longtime Republican senator if he planned on lunching with Democrats.

“Cochran didn't seem to realize he was in the wrong place,” the Hill reported.

"His father and I were elected to Congress and then to the Senate," Cochran told reporters, referring to Pryor.

The Republican senator then “fumbled” with some papers, trying to figure out where he was.

"Okay, so I've got to find out where..." the 76-year-old said.

Reporters for the Hill then directed him to the GOP luncheon, “which has been held every Tuesday in the same room for years.”

"Well, look,” Cochran said. “Let's see if I can do this. I've been here long enough -- 30 years.”

His office shrugged off the mistake.

"Everyone on Capitol Hill gets off on the wrong floor once in a while," a spokesman for Cochran said. "He has lunches and events in both those rooms. Where Senate Democrats meet on Tuesday, there are other events there during the week. I wouldn't make anything of this. It's simple to get distracted when you're walking along with a reporter in the Capitol. Especially when it's in session, it's a very busy place."

Cochran's primary win was certified this week by the Mississippi Republican Party, but McDaniel is expected to file a legal challenge, further dragging out what has been a messy and regrettable primary election in the Magnolia State.

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