Currently, there is only one Democrat representing Louisiana in the U.S. House of Representatives, Charlie Melancon of Louisiana’s Third Congressional District. Melancon, of course, has decided to forgo a re-election campaign in order to challenge David Vitter for the Senate. Very early on (actually, before Melancon even “officially” announced his intention to run for Senate), Ravi Sangisetty, a young, Ivy League-educated, Indian-American lawyer, made it known that if Melancon was going to run for Senate, then he would run for Melancon’s seat as a Democrat.
Once Melancon made it official, Sangisetty and his campaign began aggressively yet quietly raising money, and because no one challenged him in the primary, he hasn’t had to spend aggressively. So far, Sangisetty has taken a relatively low-profile, which is probably wise considering the on-going blood bath between the two Republicans, Hunt Downer and Jeff Landry, who would like to challenge him. Both men are veterans of the Louisiana National Guard, and both are apparently “attacking” one another over their respective military experience, which has left some conservatives feeling exasperated.
Last week, Landry, who is supported by the so-called “Tea Party of Louisiana” (which is, in actuality, just a group of Republicans and not some independent voting bloc), captured more than 49% of the vote in the Republican primary, a strong showing but one that, unfortunately for him, means competing, once again, against Hunt Downer (who received 36% of the vote) in a run-off election.
I expect Sangisetty’s campaign will continue to play it cool, sit back, and watch as Downer and Landry spend money attacking one another. No matter who ultimately emerges as the Republican candidate, they will be bruised and, more than likely, in need of cash.
Regardless, the Republican candidate’s biggest challenge will be Ravi Sangisetty, because although he’s taken a low profile, he’s actually raised more money than anyone else.