Mike Stagg LIVE: Louisiana Coastal Plan

Friday, 29 August 2014 13:04
Mary Landrieu's House of Cards
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card-houseThis election has been most difficult one ever for incumbent U.S. Senator Mary Landrieu (D-LA). She is humorously known as “landslide Landrieu” for winning close elections, but she has not been known for making campaign mistakes. Usually, she has run brilliant campaigns, pulling out close victories over Republican opponents. It has been particularly impressive since Louisiana is a conservative state and has been trending Republican for decades.


In this campaign, we have seen one mistake after another that has taken her off message. First it was discovered that she was charging taxpayers for at least four campaign flights. Her embarrassing mistake was not something Louisiana voters should expect from a Senator with so much experience. Mary Landrieu has been in political office since 1979 and has served in the U.S. Senate since 1997. It is inexcusable for Landrieu not to know that taxpayers should not be charged for campaign air travel.

Her latest stumble involves residency. When qualifying for re-election on August 20, Landrieu used her parents' house on South Prieur Street in New Orleans as her official address. This home, in the Broadmoor section of New Orleans, is where her parents have lived for decades. It is a house that is jointly owned by Landrieu's mother and a family corporation.

The reality is that Mary Landrieu lives in Washington D.C. in a 2.5 million dollar mansion. She has gone “beltway” in more ways than one. In a report with the Federal Election Commission, Landrieu listed her Capitol Hill home as her official address.

Not surprisingly, her GOP opponents have made her residency a major issue in recent days. It was first exposed by GOP challenger Col. Rob Maness who filed an official complaint with the Louisiana Secretary of State. Today, Maness said he will file additional complaints with District Attorney offices across Louisiana. It is doubtful that Louisiana District Attorneys, many of whom are registered Democrats and in the midst of re-election campaigns, will take any action against Landrieu.

Nonetheless, her questionable residency will be damaging for Landrieu with voters. The residency issue contributed to the defeat of former U.S. Senator Richard Lugar in Indiana.

It shows that the Senator is much more connected to Washington D.C. than she is to her hometown. While her Senate colleague David Vitter comes back to Louisiana every weekend and clearly lives in Metairie, outside of New Orleans, Landrieu is rarely seen at her “home.”

One of her neighbors, Fontaine Wells, said “I don’t think she lives there (the South Prieur home). She might come visit, but come on now — she lives in D.C. I don’t think I’ve ever seen her.”

In this election, Louisiana voters now have another reason to oppose Landrieu. They should know that she has voted with the unpopular President Barack Obama 97% of the time. She also supports Obama's liberal judicial nominees and causes such as gun control, abortion, amnesty for illegal aliens, and higher taxes that are contrary to the wishes of most voters in the state. She cast the deciding vote on the unpopular Affordable Care Act, which is forcing thousands of Louisiana citizens to pay higher health insurance premiums. And, for the coup de grace, she does not even live in Louisiana and is trying to mislead voters about this issue.

While the Senator is registered to vote in New Orleans it would be worthwhile to see what address she has on file with the IRS. Does she even pay state income taxes? What address is listed on her driver's license?

There is a good reason that her neighbors have never seen Senator in the area, she does not live there.

Landrieu, who is already very vulnerable, is now even more vulnerable. According to the Senator, “I have lived at my home on Prieur Street most of my life, and I live there now, when not fulfilling my duties in Washington or serving constituents across the state.”

Such a statement is ridiculous. Along with her husband, Landrieu owns real estate in Louisiana, but not a home. How often is Senator Landrieu at her parents' home? Does she sneak in late at night when no one sees her.


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As Col. Maness noted to the Washington Post, “A U.S. senator shouldn’t be living with their parents.”

More importantly, a U.S. Senator should not be lying to her constituents.  

Jeff Crouere

Jeff Crouere is a native of New Orleans, LA and he is the host of a Louisiana based program, “Ringside Politics,” which airs at 7:30 p.m. Fri. and 10:00 p.m. Sun. on WLAE-TV 32, a PBS station, and 7 till 11 a.m.weekdays on WGSO 990 AM in New Orleans and the Northshore. For more information, visit his web site at Ringside Politics.

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