Louisiana: Carmouche Jumps Into Race for McCrery Seat

Posted March 21, 2008 at 5:22pm

After serving for almost three decades as Caddo Parish’s top prosecutor, Democrat Paul Carmouche announced last week that he will seek the 4th district seat being vacated by retiring Rep. Jim McCrery (R).

“I have spent my life protecting the people of Northwest Louisiana and keeping our families safe,” Carmouche said in his announcement on Wednesday. “With the rising costs of housing, health care, gas, and groceries, Louisiana families are worried about making ends meet during these tough times. It is time for a change.”

Democratic officials on Capitol Hill said the pro-life, pro-gun moderate will make a strong candidate in the Shreveport-based Northwest Louisiana district despite the fact that in 2004 President Bush won 59 percent of the vote in the district.

Though McCrery usually won re-election by wide margins, the voting patterns in the 4th — like everywhere else in Louisiana since Hurricane Katrina — continue to be hard to predict. It remains unclear how much of the largely Democratic minority population that left New Orleans in the wake of the 2005 storm has since settled upstate in cities like Shreveport.

When McCrery first announced his retirement in December, former Shreveport Mayor Keith Hightower was floated as a top potential Democratic nominee. But Hightower announced late last month that he was passing on the race to stay in the private sector.
— John McArdle