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I know many of y’all are incredibly disappointed that Rep. Don Cazayoux was defeated by Republican Bill Cassidy, thanks to Democrat turncoat Independent candidate Michael Jackson.  I thought you’d be interested to know that Mr. Cassidy and Mr. Jackson met for coffee on Friday afternoon at 4 PM at a local coffee joint in Baton Rouge:

Below the jump, I’ll discuss what happened.

In the spring, Cazayoux defeated Jackson in the primary run-off 57 to 43.  Nevertheless, Mr. Jackson took an overwhelming majority of the black vote in Baton Rouge.  In emails to supporters, Mr. Jackson claimed to have taken 90% of said vote.  

This belief led him to overanalyze his popularity within the black community, and caused him to believe that he could pull off the same thing in a general election running as an Independent.  Add to that the higher black turnout caused by Barack Obama, and Mr. Jackson thought he could win a plurality of the vote with the black vote he was certain to get, plus some liberal white voters.

A wealthy, anti-union construction corporation owner, L. Lane Grigsby, decided to egg on Mr. Jackson, and fund him to keep him in the race to further his anti-union political agenda:

Enter Lane Grigsby. Through his own 527 organization, Grigsby has bankrolled much of Jackson’s campaign, helping him get his message out to black voters in the district.

Over half of Jackson’s $58,450 in fundraising to date has come from Grigsby, his family or his associates at his construction company.

Grigsby has spent money on anti-Cazayoux mailers endorsing Jackson’s campaign. The mailer features a quote from Martin Luther King, Jr. on the front and attacks Cazayoux for his connections to labor groups. At first glance, the piece looks like it's from Jackson's campaign. 

He also has been paying to produce yard signs for Jackson, according to a Democratic source in the district.

There are rumors that Mr. Grigsby did more than just make some legal donations to Mr. Jackson, especially since Mr. Jackson’s lawn signs and billboards failed to have the disclaimer required by the Federal Elections Commission Act § 441 (d) (pdf alert):

And this is the image on the few lawn signs they had printed up:

And Mr. Grigsby wasn’t happy with just funding Mr. Jackson and running his very own 527 group, he had to make illegal donations to Mr. Cassidy, in violation of the Federal Elections Commission Act §441a (pdf alert):

§ 441a. Limitations, contributions, and expenditures

(a) Dollar limits on contributions.

(1) Except as provided in subsection (i) and section 315A (2 U.S.C. § 441a-1), no person shall make contributions-

1(A) to any candidate and his authorized political committees with respect to any election for Federal office which, in the aggregate, exceed $2,300*

*This limit was raised to 2,300 for individual contributions in accordance with the Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act

I want to be extremely clear here: I don't have a problem with several individual family members maxing out ... that's fine.  If several individual family members give more than they are allowed to give, that's illegal.  That's a broken law.  And it is CLEAR that the Cassidy campaign and Lane Grigsby, his family and a friend have broken the law:

DonorRelation to Lane GrigsbyMost Recent DonationPrior DonationAmount Over Limit
L. Lane GrigsbyOwner, Cajun Construction$2,300 on 10/28/08$2,300 on 10/13/08$2,300
Bobbi GrigsbyL. Lane's Wife$2,300 on 10/28/08$1,800 on 10/13/08$1,800
Michael MoranL. Lane's son-in-law$2,300 on 10/28/08$1,300 on 10/28/08
$1,000 on 10/13/08
Jackie GraugnardWife of Cajun CFO, Milton Graugnard$2,300 on 10/28/08$2,300 on 10/28/08$2,300

And I haven’t even gotten into former State Senator Cleo Fields, who is a wanna-be kingmaker in the African-American community in Baton Rouge.  The problem he faces is Mayor Kip Holden, the first African-American Mayor in the history of Baton Rouge, who was just re-elected with some 71% of the vote in October.  Cleo funds a GOTV operation in the black community that gets out the vote in his old State Senate district.  That GOTV operation got the vote out for Mr. Jackson:

CandidateAfrican American Votes% of African American Vote
Bill Cassidy (R) 1,5034.91%
Don Cazayoux (D)19,95565.20%
Michael Jackson (Lane Grigsby) 9,14729.89%

So, race-based politics reared its ugly head here in LA-06.  The losers in this election are not Mr. Cazayoux, who will be fine.  Nor is it Mr. Jackson … he will be fine as well, but his egomaniacal candidacy, fueled in part for a desire to avenge his special primary election defeat, threw the losers - the working families of LA-06 - under the bus, and helped put a values based conservative who vowed to fight with John McCain to solve our nation’s problems.  

The big winner in this election is clear: Mr. Grigsby.  His cynicism and arrogance about electoral politics is readily apparent. He funded both candidacies without any regard, despite their vastly different agendas, and both candidates willingly took his big donations, without any regard for their own "beliefs."

Getting back to the picture above the jump, it is very interesting that Mr. Cassidy and Mr. Jackson would sit down over a cup of coffee not even 3 days after the election.  What did they talk about?  Who paid for what?

Originally posted to DailyKingFish on Mon Nov 10, 2008 at 09:36 PM PST.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tips? (24+ / 0-)


    "Some see things as they are and ask why? I dream things that never were, and ask why not?" -George Bernard Shaw, as quoted by RFK

    by DailyKingFish on Mon Nov 10, 2008 at 09:39:30 PM PST

  •  I hate to sound snarky (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    but when I passed by this dairy I thought

    "When did Michael Jackson get back to America?"

    I'm ignorant.


    'Country First, People LAST'- John Mccain.

    by daq3405 on Mon Nov 10, 2008 at 09:45:23 PM PST

  •  I think the conversation went like this: (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    pmukh, CenLamar, dantsmith, Yirmiyahu

    Jackson: I fucked up. Cream?
    Cazayoux: No, I like mine black, thanks. Yes you did.
    Jackson: In that time honored expression that sums up this part of the nation, I wish I hadn't done that.
    Cazayoux: Nice of you to say so. Now a fundamentalist idiot is going to sit on his hands in Congress while Obama tries to move us forward. And you took money from the devil. You are going to hell.
    Jackson: No, just Baton Rouge.
    Cazayoux: Same thing. At least in August.

    Tonight I'm going to party like it's 1929.

    by Bensdad on Mon Nov 10, 2008 at 10:16:16 PM PST

  •  I feel bad for Cazayoux to see him (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Naderized like this. Was Cleo Fields involved? I know that Fields has never gotten over what happened between him and Landrieu in the 1995 Governor's race. Do they want Republicans to win?

    So do you think that Cazayoux can run in 2010 and win? Or will some Black Democrat undermine him again?

  •  Is Cleo Fields that vindictive (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    What else can anyone do to placate him? He caused a white Democrat to lose. Is this enough revenge for what happened between him and Mary Landrieu THIRTEEN YEARS AGO?!??! WHAT ELSE DOES HE FUCKING WANT?

  •  This needs to be high on the rec list (6+ / 0-)

    This isn't your ordinary diary.

    It's an expose of the machinations of a certain well-funded and well-connected Republican who blatantly bought off an African-American "Independent" challenger in order to spoil the election for the incumbent Democrat.

    Earlier this year, LA-06 turned blue for the first time in over thirty years, and as this diary points out, it would have remained blue had it not been for Mr. Jackson's spoiler campaign-- a campaign that hoped to win by dividing along racial lines instead of uniting around a common cause and purpose.

    It's a story of how this "Independent" so willfully and obviously allowed his candidacy to be sold out, and, in the process, exploited his core constituency.

    This may not be a convenient truth of this electoral season, but we must learn from it.

    It's further evidence that Louisiana's "redness," at least in today's context, is a symptom of shameless paybacks, secretive promises, and, again, willful exploitation.

    As they say, a picture is worth a thousand words.

  •  So much spent to win the seat (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    chigh, SciVo

    for Cazayoux last May only to be lost now.  And the whole district, state and country pays with another me, myself and I legislator in Congress.

    Push for Voter-Owned Clean Elections: Be A Citizen Co-Sponsor

    by gildareed on Mon Nov 10, 2008 at 10:44:22 PM PST

  •  Vote principle not party. (0+ / 0-)

    We need more 3rd party candidates in the system to give us more choices. Democrats and Republicans are essentially the same so we need 3rd party candidates to push the Agenda. If Michael Jackson is honest and principled he should have no regrets about what he did. I proudly vote 3rd party whenever the 2 major candidates won't do and that included this election. It's not a wasted vote to support someone who has no chance of winning. It's a wasted vote to support someone who doesn't share your principles.

    •  As this post clearly demonstrates (4+ / 0-)

      Mr. Jackson is neither honest nor principled.

      Honesty? Look at his billboards and yard signs. He blatantly violated the law. A minor infraction, to be sure, but an infraction that demonstrates an unwillingness to disclose his financial backers. Simply put, that is dishonest.

      Principled? Jackson raised HALF of his money from a man who apparently VIOLATED CAMPAIGN FINANCE LAWS WHEN DONATING TO JACKSON'S REPUBLICAN OPPONENT.

    •  Jackson has no principle (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      chigh, DailyKingFish, CenLamar

      It should be pretty clear that Jackson ran on no other platform than identity politics, whereas even as a brand-new Congressman without even a full term Cazayoux had already begun to deliver Louisianans much-needed hurricane relief and political clout.

      •  It is really a shame... (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        chigh, dantsmith

        Cazayoux may have not been the most liberal or most progressive guy in the House, but he is a good man who could be counted on as a reliable voice for Louisiana.

        Jackson allowed himself to be funded by Republicans in order to cut into Cazayoux's margin among African-Americans.


        And again, that is why the photos of his powwow with Cassidy only three days after the election are so telling and provocative.

    •  No we don't (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      DailyKingFish, CenLamar

      There was a difference between the two candidates  and Jackson was principled by a long shot. We was running not to provide a alternatives but to deliberately siphon votes from Cazayoux and was getting illegal donations to do it.

      Jesus open your eyes for christ sake and if you don't think thinks there's a difference between Dems and Repubs then find a Green Party blog to go to and stop coming to a blof that supports the Democratic Party if you think there's no difference.

    •  I don't mean to be argumentative (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      But this is a Democratic blog. If you really believe that "Democrats and Republicans are essentially the same," this is not really the place for you. While we'll all agree that there are some pretty shitty Democrats out there, 3rd parties aren't the answer. The answer is to get rid of the shitty Democrats, because the Democratic Party is our party.

      Deval Patrick for Attorney General, Warren Buffett for Treasury, Bill Richardson for State, Robert Reich for Labor, Al Gore for EPA

      by Yirmiyahu on Mon Nov 10, 2008 at 11:51:26 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Progressives can work on (0+ / 0-)

        Kicking out the Shitty Democrats, Libertarians will work on kicking out the Shitty Republicans, Once the halls of Washington are filled with principled statesmen, we can have a real debate, and together we'll change the world for the better. Does that sound like a plan to you? By the way, it is my opinion and the opinion of many other Libertarians that Barack Obama is one of those Shitty Democrats who needs to be kicked out. He voted for the Warrantless Wiretapping, the Bailout, and every Iraq War spending bill, just as Bush wanted. When Dennis Kucinich presses for Impeachment agains Barack Obama, please lend him your ear.

        •  With all due respect (0+ / 0-)

          As Michael "Jackson" Jefferson would say, "That's ignorant."

          And as the progressives in Louisiana would say, if you actually believe Obama is a "Shitty Democrat" who should already be pressed for impeachment, GEAUX TO HELL.

          You're making Libertarians look like crazy reactionaries who, instead of discussing the topic at hand, prefer instead to advance their own, absurd, and completely out-of-context agenda.

          Good luck with that.


          •  To a lot of people (0+ / 0-)

            who don't completely understand the philosophy of liberty, lot's of planks on the Libertarian platform may seem totally crazy. For instance, I know many Obama supporters would be up in arms at hearing me say that I support getting rid of the Department of Education, and that kind of reaction is to be expedted. They would say, we can't get rid of the Department of Education, we need to invest MORE money in Education so our children can learn more. They don't understand that we don't support getting rid of Education or as some would accuse, "giving up" on our children. we support taking control of the education system away from the Federal Government and placing it into the hands of State and Local communities or private enterprise. Your first instinct might tell you that expanding the size of the Department of Education would increase the quality of Education. Bush doubled the size of the Department of Education under No Child Left Behind, and look at the damage that caused. Obama plans to expand it Even further. Can we expect the results to be any different. However, before 1978, when the Department of Education was created, the United States had the best education system in the World and it was the envy of the world. Now look how dumb America is. Did you see Miss Teen South Carolina? I expect some people on these forums to call me a crazy reactionary. Despite the fact that this country was founded on the philosophy of liberty, it's not exactly a mainstream viewpoint nowadays. Everyone wants to control everything without understanding that a desire to control is the cause of much evil in the world. In that regard, I view Obama as no different from Bush, since he believes he can control the economy and save it through bailouts, or can control the Middle East and broaden the power of the American Empire.

            •  This has (0+ / 0-)



            •  With all due respect (0+ / 0-)

              In a thread about Jackson being photographed with Cassidy three days after the election, how does a Paultard rambling about the DOE contribute at all?

              By the way, if you view Obama as no different than Bush, then you should probably take a week off from the Wingnut Home School Academy and reenter the real world.

              Look Science! And Math! Oh and English!

              AND CIVICS! YAY!

              Seriously, why would we take advice on education from a guy who can't spell and thinks Obama's real goal is broadening the American Empire?

              Do you even believe in reading the news? Or is it easier and more convenient to have the crazies read it to you?


  •  "Standing on His Own for Us" (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Who would have thought that "Us" for Michael Jackson would turn out to be Cassidy, Lane Grigsby, and himself; that said, I'm still not clear on what Jackson actually got out of such a Faustian arrangement.

    •  Yes, it is ironic (0+ / 0-)

      But it's still a smart-looking sign.

      However, I must point out that the exclusive slogan of "Standing on his own for US" connotes a much different message than would a slogan like "Standing on his own for YOU." (Bold mine).

  •  Cleo Fields...pffft (0+ / 0-)

    He took a wad of cash from Edwards and ended up starring in one of those grainy "this is how things are really done" justice videos. How is isn't serving time besides Eddie is beyond me.

    We have nothing to fear except for the really scary stuff

    by charityslave on Mon Nov 10, 2008 at 11:51:25 PM PST

  •  1000 words (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    DailyKingFish, CenLamar

    These photos should not be let to fall between the cracks.  We've established why Mr. Jackson failed to appreciate the zeitgeist of this historical moment, but how does this reflect on Dr. Cassidy?  One of his main contributors, L. Lane Grigsby, didn't contribute along with his wife and son-in-law upwards of $15,600 on accident.  Ostensibly, one funds a candidate to that degree out of devotion to the candidate's ideas and values that one shares with them.

    But if this is true, then why would Dr. Cassidy take money from someone who forks out half the budget for a candidate more liberal than his main opponent, and even more out of step with himself?

  •  sleeping with the devil (0+ / 0-)

    May the Schwartz be with you!

    by FLS on Tue Nov 11, 2008 at 12:54:57 PM PST

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