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Elections deliver bad news to state, national Democrats

Voters sent state politicians conflicting messages Saturday by Baton Rougeans sending a political newcomer to the state Senate over a veteran Louisiana House member, while denizens of the U.S. Second District reelected a legally embattled U.S. House member – but the signal was all clear to Democrats: bad.

Despite being the subject of an ongoing corruption investigation, Rep. William Jefferson was reelected to Congress. No doubt the two major factors of this was the peculiar Orleans-area insistence on thumbing its nose at the rest of the country, in this case manifested by many black voters believing Jefferson was being set up for posing too much of a challenge to “the man” (whoever or whatever that is) and “retaliating” by pressing the button for him, and by others who were supporters of unsuccessful opponents of Jefferson who, frankly, wanted a damaged incumbent in office in case he is indicted and resigns, creating another chance for their favorite to get in that office.

But the gesticulation of defiance also ended up giving the sanctimonious national Democrats a black eye. Jefferson is perhaps the most visible of the many ethical problems congressional Democrats have, reminding an electorate temporarily distracted from this fact long enough to vote in sufficient numbers for enough Democrat candidates last month. Jefferson’s reelection exposes the sham status of the national Democrats, and will embarrass them with a likely indictment and lengthy trial all the way through the 2008 elections.

So, the apparently unethical Democrat gets reelected, but a clean GOP incumbent met with defeat by another Republican. State Rep. William Daniel IV lost heavily to physician Bill Cassidy in the latter’s first run for office, for Senate District 16. On the issues, the candidates didn’t differ much, so the main factor in Daniel’s defeat here had to be his violation in spirit of term limits.

Daniel is preparing to conclude his third term in the state House. But the three-consecutive term limit in the state Constitution applies just to a lawmaker’s present chamber. In anticipation of a future political career, Daniel switched from Democrat to Republican last year, got an early break when past occupant of the seat Jay Dardenne was elected as Secretary of State in this year’s special election, and ran for it.

But so did Cassidy and, again, while it was perfectly legal for Daniel to run for the Senate, apparently a good portion of voters must have held it against his desire to stay in the Legislature more than 12 years. As long as this sentiment is not particular to that portion of Baton Rouge comprising the district, this could be a sign of big trouble to other term-limited legislators who are thinking of a similar switch.

And being that term-limited Democrats outnumber Republicans 40-24, it’s likely that of those others who try to extend their careers they disproportionately will be Democrats so this trend could hurt the state party fortunes as well the damage being done to the national party’s image by Jefferson’s triumph.


Anonymous said...

It is no surprise that Jefferson was reelected. New Orleans seems to thrive on corruption. At last, the trial of, Stan Pampy Barre, Stanford Barre, Stan Barre is scheduled to begin. I hope the jury will do the right thing and convict that scum bag. His son was also arrested and is awaiting trial.

On February 19, 2006, Stan Barre, was arrested in Sumner Washington.
His trial is scheduled for February 20, 2007. He was charged with first degree burglary, first degree theft, and theft of a firearm.

Anonymous said...

Stanford Peter Barre, the son also passed himself off as a New Orleans Parish Sherrif while in Washington State. After some online investigations I can only guess that he is carrying his fathers old badge. Having met him personaly in Washington I know he lives a life of lies and using people, especialy women to get what he wants. Amoung the lies he claims to have lost multiple high value properties in the flood. Yet in Washington he appeared unemployable and lived off of friends and relatives. He pretty much walked away from the crimes he organized. Some reason everyone else in the case are still in limbo facing heavier charges then Stans 90 day house arrest and probation.

Anonymous said...