Clueless on the South: Is Sen. Mary Landrieu missing a foot?

Rep. Bill Cassidy and students from Baton Rouge

Rep. Bill Cassidy is shown here with students from Baton Rouge. (Photo: Cassidy US House page, Photostream)

When a heated campaign is underway, a candidate will often say something off the top of her head and regret it later. It’s the old shoot-yourself-in-the-foot factor. Louisiana Sen. Mary Landrieu (D) may be missing a foot this morning.

One of Landrieus’s trusted advisers should warn her about a golden rule for candidates—Thou shalt not diss the peeps whose votes you want. She’s done that at least twice. 

Sen. Landrieu Obamacare

Sen. Mary Landrieu shot herself in the foot over Obamacare, among other matters. Her conflicted stance on the PPACA (Obamacare) was noted by the National Republican Senatorial Committee in a video. (Snip from YouTube: http://youtu.be/sw5gmqfpeY8)

The most recent incident occurred during an interview Landrieu granted to NBC News, a media outlet most of us would consider very friendly to Dems. The Daily Caller provided a brief on some of her remarks:

“I’m going to be very, very honest with you. The South has not always been the friendliest place for African-Americans…It’s been a difficult time for the president to present himself in a very positive light as a leader…It’s not always been a good place for women to be able to present ourselves.”

Media on the right were only too happy to share Landrieu’s insults. That’s not the first time Landrieu has made remarks like that, however.

The senator even managed to inject racial politics into a general statement about social security. We have to give her credit for creativity because you have to be really creative to link the two subjects. Scott McKay, a veteran Lousiana-based writer of many persuasions, wrote about the last Senate candidates’ debate:

“She [Landrieu] decided this would be a good time to play the race card and say that black people in Madison Parish only have a life expectancy of 70 years and that Cassidy would deny poor black people in Madison Parish the chance to retire. Or something. And that she would never raise the retirement age. There weren’t any groans in the audience, but there certainly could have been. She then added to that by playing the ‘Eat The Rich’ card by suggesting higher taxes on millionaires, which put her in severe jeopardy of getting wiped out when one of the other two hit her with ‘those are the people who hire employees who’d pay into Social Security, and you just stopped them from hiring more people to contribute to the program.’”

Landrieu refers to Cassidy, who is Bill Cassidy, a Republican congressman currently ahead of her in the polls.

Landrieu’s unfortunate remarks suggest a lack of knowledge about the South, which is where the state she represents is located.

Black Entertainment Television might be useful to the senator if she wants to learn more about the voting bloc she seems to be concerned about. BET ran a story about segregation legacy media didn’t make much of:

“A newly released analysis of the 2010 U.S. Census results by the Population Reference Bureau (PRB) shows that the least racially segregated metropolitan areas in the U.S were all found in the fast-growing South and West.”

Furthermore, President Barack Obama’s heritage—he is biracial, not black—has nothing to do with criticism of his policies. Many of us, especially in the South, are or will be paying higher costs for electricity, healthcare, and health insurance because of this president. Small businesses are hard hit by his policies, and our tax burden has increased. Add in the fact that the president and his fellow Democrats are obsessed with importing more foreign workers at a time when black unemployment is in double digits. Toss in the fact many of us have profound differences from the Democrats when it comes to the role of the federal government in our lives.

The Louisiana Senate seat may not be resolved come Election Night. A candidate must receive at least 50 percent of the vote to win or there will be a runoff on Dec. 6. Complicating matters for Republican candidate Cassidy is the fact there’s another Republican in the race. There are nine candidates in all, but Landrieu and Cassidy are the only viable candidates if you look at polling. There are also a ton of initiatives on the ballot—sometimes parties do that in an effort to get out voters who might not otherwise take time to cast a ballot.

Considering the coverage Landrieu has received for bashing the South, she must be looking for her foot this morning. She shot it completely off this time.

(Commentary by Kay B. Day/Oct. 31, 2014)

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About Kay Day

Kay B. Day is a freelance writer who has published in national and international magazines and websites. The author of 3 books, her work is anthologized in textbooks and collections. She has won awards for poetry, nonfiction and fiction. Day is a member of the American Society of Journalists and Authors and the Authors Guild.
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