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Monday, 25 August 2014 12:59
Landrieu, Maness, Cassidy focus debates, polls and clout
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capitol-dcThe debate over the US Senate race debate rages—at least, for now, from Camp Landrieu.

Mary Landrieu’s campaign has been focusing upon the lack of commitment from Team Cassidy to engage in debate of the issues.

 The effort by the Landrieu team to debate is indication of the difficult task Landrieu has to beat the Republican challenger. 

Normally, an incumbent finds ways not to debate, in fear that the challenger will appear as worthy of a candidate, if not more so, than the one holding office.

Six years ago, the one complaining was Treasurer John Kennedy who wanted more TV-time with Landrieu as they went one-on-one to the brutal finish-line.

This time around, however, the debate shoe is on the other foot and Senator Landrieu is taking the gamble that she will trounce Cassidy in front of the cameras.

Also, this time around, there is another challenger, that of Tea Party-favorite Rob Maness, who many pundits believe stands in the way of a first-primary victory, by Cassidy or Landrieu.

More than five days after Congressman Bill Cassidy qualified for the U.S. Senate race in Louisiana, he still refuses to tell voters if he will participate in any debates, despite promising to release a full list of debates after qualification.

Here is how the Landrieu campaign via email blast expressed their attempts to get Cassidy to emerge from what some might call a “rope-a-dope” stance:

More than two weeks ago, Congressman Cassidy refused to tell the Associated Press what debates he would participate in until qualifying. After the Congressman qualified last week, numerous reporters asked him what debates he would participate in and why his schedule was not public. Congressman Cassidy not only refused to commit to even one debate, but instead of answering the question, a confused and flustered Congressman told the press “it’s hard for me to find out where I’m going” and “check our Facebook page” for details of events. There still haven’t been any posts about what debates the Congressman will participate in.

NOT SO FAST

Another team running for the US Senate spot wants the world to know that the Landrieu-Cassidy match is not the only game in town.

According to the Maness campaign, also via an email, there is “good news for conservatives” and that in their own poll, the Colonel Rob Maness campaign is in mid-double digits.

So says the Maness email in relevant parts:  The survey shows that Col. Rob Maness (R-LA) has climbed into double digits in this three-person race and is now surging. Here are the results:
 

Mary Landrieu (D-LA)

43%

Bill Cassidy (R-LA)

32%

Rob Maness (R-LA)

16%

Other

1%

Undecided

8%


As you may know, Col. Maness started this race with no name awareness, no money, and no organization. But thanks to his hard work, your financial support, and a winning message, that has begun to change. 

In March, his support was only 3%. It rose to 8% by June and has now doubled again to 16% in less than two months. At this rate, he will be in second place in October and make the run-off with Landrieu in November.
Bill Cassidy's weakness as a candidate can be seen in the hypothetical head-to-head contests with Mary Landrieu that we tested in our poll. 

Cassidy trails Landrieu by 6 points despite having spent over $3 million, having the full support of the DC establishment, and having high name awareness.
 

Mary Landrieu (D-LA)

49%

Bill Cassidy (R-LA)

43%

Undecided

8%


However, Col. Maness -- the grassroots candidate -- trails Landrieu by only 4 points despite not being as well known in the state. 
 

Mary Landrieu (D-LA)

48%

Rob Maness (R-LA)

44%

Undecided

8%

   

THE RECORD

For Mary Landrieu to prevail for the fourth time as candidate for US Senate, she must show that losing her in the US Senate will be a blow to Louisiana’s economy and that if Cassidy or Maness were to win, even if the GOP took the Senate, Louisiana would lose all of the built-up seniority and clout, especially with David Vitter opting to run for Louisiana governor for 2015.

Today, as in many days past, her US Senate office sent out another email notifying the public that she has helped bringing home opportunities for a state in need.

Here is part of the press release revealing an investment in Terrebonne Louisiana:

U.S. Senator Mary L. Landrieu, D-La., today announced that the Economic Development Administration (EDA) awarded a $127,009 investment award to the South Central Planning and Development Commission in Terrebonne, La.  This award will help to establish an economic development framework that will expand and support private capital investment and job creation in Acadia, Evangeline, Iberia, Lafayette, St. Landry, St. Martin, St. Mary and Vermillion parishes. This EDA investment award will cover 80 percent of the total cost of development.

“Louisiana’s bayou region has become a bustling economic center boasting rapid economic growth in recent years. This investment will create a solid foundation for the South Central Planning and Development Commission to expand their work to Acadiana parishes, allowing them to create local jobs and grow small businesses already in our local communities,” said Sen. Landrieu.

“We would like to thank Sen. Landrieu for continuing to show her support for this ongoing initiative.  This award will provide funding for developing a cohesive and collaborative plan to guide the Region 4 Planning District in Louisiana over the next ten years.  This grant will also provide an opportunity to evaluate the interactions between Districts 3 & 4.  Again we are extremely thankful and excited for this opportunity to make the two Districts much more resilient,” said Kevin Belanger, Executive Director of the South Central Planning and Development Commission.

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