Political

Nov 1, 2010 3:27 PM

A look at the races for Louisiana's U.S. House districts.

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) - Six of Louisiana's seven congressional
districts have contested elections on Tuesday's ballot. A look at
the districts, their candidates and the campaigns (Fundraising
totals are based on latest available data from the Federal Election
Commission through Oct. 13):
1ST DISTRICT
INCUMBENT: Steve Scalise, Republican from Jefferson.
OPPONENTS: Myron Katz, Democrat from New Orleans; and Arden
Wells, independent from Ponchatoula.
CAMPAIGN: Scalise, a staunch fiscal and social conservative, has
proven highly popular in his district. Neither Katz nor Wells is
well-known, nor are they well-funded. Neither is expected to pose a
threat to Scalise.
FUNDRAISING: Scalise raised $1.3 million. Katz loaned his
campaign $50,000 and raised less than $10,000 in contributions.
Wells reported no fundraising.
DISTRICT: The 1st District covers much of the suburban New
Orleans area, including part of Jefferson Parish and the north
shore of Lake Pontchartrain.
---
2ND DISTRICT
INCUMBENT: Anh "Joseph" Cao, Republican from New Orleans.
OPPONENTS: Anthony Marquize, independent from Violet; Jack
Radosta, independent from New Orleans; and Cedric Richmond,
Democrat from New Orleans.
CAMPAIGN: Cao has cast himself as a bipartisan friend of
Democratic President Barack Obama, but votes against two key Obama
initiatives, the economic stimulus and health care overhaul, have
provided Richmond, a state representative, with campaign fodder.
Cao is something of a long-shot in a district he first won two
years ago in a low-turnout, hurricane-delayed election with an
indicted incumbent. Richmond, a black Democrat in a mostly black,
mostly Democratic district would seem to have the edge, although
Cao's campaign has raised questions about his ethics.
The other two candidates are little-known and have done little
organized campaigning.
FUNDRAISING: Cao raised $1.9 million. Richmond raised $894,000.
Marquize brought in $15,000, including $5,300 of his own money.
Radosta reported no fundraising.
DISTRICT: The 2nd District includes much of the city of New
Orleans and part of neighboring Jefferson Parish.
---
3RD DISTRICT
INCUMBENT: None. The seat is open because Democratic Rep.
Charlie Melancon is running for a U.S. Senate seat.
CANDIDATES: Jeff Landry, Republican from New Iberia; and Ravi
Sangisetty, Democrat from Houma.
CAMPAIGN: After a bitter primary battle for the GOP nomination,
Landry tried to frame his differences with Sangisetty along a
partisan divide. He's campaigned on a conservative platform,
slamming federal spending levels, complaining about liberal
leadership in Washington and opposing Obama's policies in a
district that heavily backed John McCain for president.
Sangisetty's running as a "pro-life, pro-gun conservative
Democrat." He talked of a need to rein in federal spending and to
avoid more corporate bailouts and repeatedly tried to distance
himself from the national Democratic Party. He said if the
Democrats maintain the majority in the U.S. House, he wouldn't vote
for Nancy Pelosi to retain her job as speaker.
Both candidates are lawyers who have never before held political
office.
FUNDRAISING: Landry brought in $1 million, including $63,000 of
his own money. Sangisetty brought in $771,000, including $50,000 of
his own money.
DISTRICT: The 3rd District is mostly rural, covering all or part
of 13 parishes stretching from Acadiana across much of southeast
Louisiana. It includes New Iberia, Houma, Thibodaux and several
parishes along the Mississippi River.
---
4TH DISTRICT
INCUMBENT: John Fleming, Republican from Minden.
OPPONENTS: Artis Cash, independent from Shreveport; and David
Melville, Democrat from Bossier City.
CAMPAIGN: Fleming, a doctor seeking a second term in office, was
confident enough about his re-election that he focused on direct
mail and radio ads rather than an expensive TV campaign. He
campaigned as an anti-Obama Republican, saying repeal of the
Democrats' health overhaul was among his top priorities and calling
Democratic policies out-of-step with his district.
Melville, a Methodist minister, pitched himself as a moderate
candidate willing to work across party lines. He accused Fleming of
being too divisive and of putting the GOP over his constituents.
Fleming said reaching across the aisle currently was impossible.
Cash, a pastor, did little campaigning and has lost two previous
bids for the seat.
FUNDRAISING: Fleming raised $1.4 million. Melville brought in
$194,000, including $57,000 of his own money. Cash reported no
fundraising.
DISTRICT: The 4th District covers western Louisiana from the
Arkansas state line to the Calcasieu Parish line. The district
includes all or part of 13 parishes and the cities of Shreveport,
Minden and Natchitoches.
---
5TH DISTRICT
INCUMBENT: Rodney Alexander, Republican from Quitman.
OPPONENTS: Tom Gibbs Jr., independent from Sterlington.
CAMPAIGN: Alexander, seeking a fifth term in Congress, mounted a
modest campaign since Gibbs raised no money and could do no
advertising. Alexander campaigned against federal spending levels,
bailouts, the Democrats' health overhaul and the size of the
federal government.
Gibbs, a petroleum land man who's never before run for elected
office, hoped to attract support from tea party backers frustrated
with incumbents, but he isn't expected to unseat Alexander.
FUNDRAISING: Alexander raised $1.1 million. Gibbs reported no
fundraising.
DISTRICT: The 5th District covers much of northeast and central
Louisiana, from the Arkansas state line to the outskirts of Baton
Rouge and including Monroe and Alexandria.
---
6TH DISTRICT
INCUMBENT: Bill Cassidy, Republican from Baton Rouge.
OPPONENTS: Merritt E. McDonald Sr., Democrat from Baton Rouge.
CAMPAIGN: Cassidy, a doctor seeking a second term in Congress,
campaigned largely through speaking events and direct mail, rather
than large-scale TV advertising after his opponent McDonald, an
engineer, didn't mount an organized campaign against him. Cassidy
is expected to hold on to his seat.
FUNDRAISING: Cassidy raised $1.5 million. McDonald reported no
fundraising.
DISTRICT: The 6th District includes East Baton Rouge Parish and
all or part of eight surrounding parishes.
---
7TH DISTRICT
INCUMBENT: Charles Boustany, Republican from Lafayette.
OPPONENTS: None.
CAMPAIGN: Boustany didn't attract a challenger and advanced to a
fourth term without an election.
FUNDRAISING: Boustany raised $1.5 million for this election
cycle.
DISTRICT: The 7th District covers southwest Louisiana, including
Lake Charles and Lafayette.

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