WASHINGTON (AP) – Sheriff Mike Ezell has defeated six-term U.S. Rep. Steven Palazzo in a Republican primary runoff in south Mississippi. It’s a rare defeat of a congressional incumbent in a Mississippi party primary. Ezell is a sheriff in one of Mississippi’s coastal counties.

He called Palazzo a no-show for skipping debates before the seven-person Republican primary in early June. Ezell criticized Palazzo after a report by the Office of Congressional Ethics found “substantial reason to believe” Palazzo had abused his office by misspending campaign funds.

A Palazzo spokesperson said the investigation was based on “false allegations” made by a former political opponent.

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