Young Republicans Deploy for Louisiana Run-Offs


Bill Cassidy speaking to the YRNF leadership.

Bill Cassidy speaking to the YRNF leadership.


Many Republicans are still celebrating their overwhelming midterm victory from the beginning of November. But not every seat has been decided. In Louisiana, the senate race and two house seats turned into run-offs to be be decided next month. Run-off elections face more than just an opposition candidate, they battle against voter fatigue and holiday schedules. To help turn the tide, members of the Young Republican National Federation (YRNF) deployed to Baton Rouge, volunteering in both the Senate race and one of the house House campaigns last weekend.


The Young Republicans (YRs) participated in the race pitting Senator Mary Landrieu (D) against Rep. Bill Cassidy (R). Senator Landrieu just recently lost her attempt to approve the Keystone Pipeline bill in the lame-duck session in Congress. She has already served two terms as Senator but it doesn’t look likely that she will win again. Landrieu recently used race-baiting tactics in her campaign which PIE covered in the weeks leading up to the election.


The YRs also helped Garret Graves (R), in Louisiana’s 6th Congressional District. His opponent, former Governor Edwin Edwards (D) is 87-years old, on his third marriage and a convicted felon; he spent 9 years in prison for extortion, racketeering and fraud. He is known for making some pretty outlandish statements and…. being a criminal.


The Young Republicans selected Louisiana as their winter quarterly locations knowing the likelihood that the state would end up having some important run-off races. “It was great to have YR’s come from all across the country to Baton Rouge to help Bill Cassidy defeat Mary Landrieu,” said YRNF Co-Chair Dennis Cook, part of the national leadership for the organization. “Many of our YRs, if not all, took no time off after the November 4th election, immediately heading to converge in Louisiana.” Cook added that the reason Young Republicans worked so tirelessly just after a major election was, “to assure that Republicans pickup another seat in the U.S. Senate. We want to do our part and put an end to President Obama’s destructive policies.”


YRs send volunteers to help in key races all over the country during elections. But Louisiana’s Senate seat is particularly important for Republicans in the 114th Congress. “The deployment was the largest of its kind by the Young Republicans, with over 60 people either phone banking or knocking doors for US Senate candidate Bill Cassidy and congressional candidate Garret Graves,” said Michael Bayham, Chairman of the Louisiana Young Republican Federation and Coordinator for the event. “The YRs demonstrated on Saturday that they’re more than a Republican cheering section; they are willing to get out on the field and make things happen.”


Polling numbers back up Bayham’s analysis from his work on the ground in Louisiana. “As of right now, both Cassidy and Graves are favored to win their elections.” A recent Rasmussen poll shows Cassidy with a commanding 15 point leader over Landrieu. A local poll on the District 6 Race, JMC Analytics and Polling, shows Graves stomping Edwin with 61% of the vote, leaving the Democrat with only 35%. (Ralph Abraham (R) is running for Rep. Vance McAllister’s seat, who was disgraced after his kissing scandal. He is also favored to win his run-off against Monroe Mayor Jamie Mayo (D).)


The Young Republicans made a serious commitment to help win the Senate back for the GOP. Their work last weekend in Louisiana just provided proof of their dedication. YRNF is just one great example of how conservative Millennials can impact elections and make their voices heard through the ballot box. Louisiana’s early voting started yesterday, with December 9th as the official election day. It should be a nice early Christmas present to conservatives across the state. Hats off to the YR volunteers who have helped make it happen!


About Katrina Jorgensen

Katrina Jorgensen is a devoted advocate for Millennial issues with deep concerns over the direction of America's foreign policy. She seeks to promote political education and empowerment for her generation. You can find her on Twitter @Veribatim. With her focus on Eurasia, Katrina acts as Senior Foreign Policy Advisor to the Young Republican National Federation, part of their International Committee. She is a writer and communication specialist in her day job. She regularly contributes to conservative blogs such as Red Alert and IJReview. She has worked as freelance journalist for think tanks, major media outlets and print newspapers. For 6 years, she ran her own web design and consulting company in Texas. Her true passion is non-profits. Katrina has worked for and advised multiple international NGOs. She volunteers her time and provides marketing advice to local charities and other not-for profit-organizations. Katrina also loves reading wonky foreign policy blogs, instgramming her cooking experiments, losing herself in a fiction novel, and exploring new places with her husband, Kai.