Area Voters See Familiar Faces in Runoff
As early voting begins, the tension in the race for Congress has ramped up significantly. Each side is accusing the other of distortions and lies. Attack ads are flying. Third parties have evaluated some of the attacks and found many to be untrue. But there is one ad that stands out above all others. The Gary Chambers endorsement for Karen Carter Peterson. It shows Karen Carter Peterson and Gary Chambers talking to a constituent of Petersons.
The ad is bad on many different levels. The Karen Carter Peterson Campaign produced the ad. It is supposed to show the significance of the Gary Chambers endorsement of Karen Carter Peterson. How the Baton Rouge native and resident, Gary Chambers, provides street credibility in New Orleans for Karen Carter Peterson. But is shows the exact opposite.
Gary Chamber was a surprisingly strong third place finisher in the primary. In Peterson’s Senate district, he captured more votes than KCP. In fact, he almost made it to the runoff. She only beat him by two points. So many predicted his endorsement might tip the scales in the election. And nobody was surprised to see KCP put together a string of commercials touting his endorsement of her.
But the ad in question actually shows the Chambers endorsement might not be so influential after all. The results of the primary are more likely akin to familiarity breeds contempt than a new strong progressive wave flooding the streets of New Orleans. Being a New Orleanian, I know a good flood when I see it. Chambers results are more like some aggravating street ponding than a park your car on the neutral ground and hope it’s high enough when the street fills with water kinda thing.
Related: Our 1st Look At the Runoff
The KCP record is more likely the issue for her. KCP has not only missed numerous votes in the Senate, but according to her own ad, she has not even been in her hood with her people. So that she lost in her own district is not astonishing. People were fed up with the status quo. Her anti-incumbency stank even wafted to Troy Carter. But Carter also got more votes in her district than she did.
Gary Chambers offered a fresh, new progressive alternative for frustrated voters. He is a dynamic public speaker. He was able to convince a large number of people to put an X next to his name. But a look at the video, shows that the average New Orleanian pays little real attention to Chambers. His Baton Rouge accent and demeanor is a square peg in the round hole that is New Orleans. People respect, understand and simultaneously ignore him in real life. Just look at the video.
Chambers’ success should be measured in Baton Rouge. But there, the same contempt exists for him. He ran a strong third in his hometown too. And in Baton Rouge, most of the elected officials have endorsed Troy Carter.
All in all, the Gary Chambers 15 minutes of political fame seems exhausted in this election. He may have a bright future in Baton Rouge elections. But does anyone think Gary Chambers could move to New Orleans and get elected mayor? City Council? Or if we had – dog catcher?
Mr. Chambers seems to be a fine young man who wants to make a difference. Hopefully, he can find a path to success that makes him happy and benefits the people.
But the 2nd Congressional District won’t be decided because Gary Chambers endorsed KCP.