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Senate District 16, once known as Jay Dardenne’s home plate, includes Baton Rouge’s most informed and active voting district in East Baton Rouge Parish.  Dardenne went on to prove his political savvy by winning the position of Louisiana Secretary of State.  After Dardenne moved upward, Dr. Bill Cassidy quickly beat out his opponents winning the much sought after Senate seat, only to move on to the 6th Congressional District seat vacated by Richard Baker.  This Senate seat brings good tidings!

Now, the seat is up for grabs again.  Three Republican candidates are vying for this critical seat in the Louisiana Senate including two ‘career candidates’ that formerly ran unsuccessfully for other offices:  Dan Claitor, attorney and a member of the well known Claitor family and Laurinda Calongne, business owner and lobbyist.  The third candidate is a newcomer:  Lee Domingue, business owner and not-for-profit founder.

According to The Advocate, Domingue leads the field with the most dollars raised.  Calongne and Claitor claims this does not concern them; however, anyone following politics understands that cash is the mother’s milk of winning campaigns.

  • Lobbyist, Laurinda Calongne’s website, quotes her as saying “we should have learned  long ago  that overspending during a temporary rush…is economic suicide.”  She also touts herself as a fiscal conservative, but Calongne doesn’t seem so conservative fiscally since she loaned her own campaign for congress nearly $300,000 according to the FEC.  She lost.  Calongne is also closely tied in business to the infamous Bob Livingston – though Calongne removed Livingston from her consulting firm’s website, Livingston still lists her as one of his key people in his Washington lobbyist firm.  Enough said.
  • Attorney, Dan Claitor’s website, gives reasons he is running, but it seems he is running because he failed to win the race for District Attorney.  Sorry, but I am not fond of candidates that jump from one race to another, so I will leave you to visit his website.  Running in race after race is what was the demise of Dan Kyle, a likeable man with many good attributes, but a killer scenario in the political world, according to voters.  Claitor may be also be a good guy, but anyone who can’t even put their picture on their website makes me wonder.  His campaign for District Attorney failed to make headway with his “Ready to Listen. Prepared to Fight”  slogan.  He should stay in his first love – fighting crime!
  • Business owner, Lee Domingue, caught my eye when a friend told me his background and compassion for others through a not-for-profit organization he created.  Domingue founded Cyrus International to fight human trafficking and to support orphans with AIDS.  He is also a successful businessman, honored as Businessperson of the Year by Junior Achievement and is author of the book Pearls of the King.  Domingue started his business in a garage and brought it to a billion dollar success.  He believes he is here to make a difference.  I like that kind of thinking – immensely, especially when they have proven success and are able to bring others together.  Coalition builders with fresh ideas are excellent first-timers for elections!

Out of all the potential candidates for Senate District 16, I am most impressed with Lee Domingue.  Perhaps I will let his own words in the BR Business Report speak for him best:

“Making money is easy, but making a difference is eternal.” 

“I want to be remembered as somebody who gave it all for the next generation.”

Until next time,

Red Stick Republican

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