Cheney to hit the campaign trail for Louisiana Republican. What?

Jake Turcotte

His nationwide approval rating may be low, but that doesn't mean it's low everywhere.

Vice President Dick Cheney is back on the campaign trail. He went on the campaign trail this year? Yes. In some areas of the country, his approval ratings are above freezing. In some spots his ratings are actually balmy.

Really red states

Case in point: He headed home to Wyoming in early November to rally the GOP troops to vote for Republican candidate Cynthia Lummis and that paid off. Lummis won that race handily with a 53 - 42 percent margin.

He's hoping to bring that same magic to the fourth district of Louisiana as Republican Paul Fleming is going head-to-head against Democrat Paul Carmouche to represent Shreveport-area constituents in Congress.

Upcoming election?

Hold it. Wasn't the election two weeks ago? Correct. We have not warped back in time.

Hurricane Gustav delayed the primary election in the district, forcing it to be held on Nov. 4. The general election is slated for Dec. 6.

Where's Joe the Plumber?

So if you're a political junkie, you've got two more weeks of political action. Now if Fleming could only grab Sarah Palin and Joe the Plumber to join Cheney, we'd have a Republican jambalaya-like tour de force.

The Vice President will hold a fundraiser for Fleming in Shreveport. Both candidates are campaigning for an open seat as Republican Jim McCrery is retiring after a 20-year stranglehold on the district.

Death Row

So what topic wins in the fourth district of Louisiana? Putting people on death row appears to be a winner -- at least that's what Fleming's opponent is touting. Or at least his pollster is.

The National Republican Congressional Committee is taking shots at Carmouche's record on crime. He's been the District Attorney in the Shreveport area since 1978 and he appears to have some law enforcement cred -- well, that is if you count the death row thing.

“He put more people on death row than any other DA in Louisiana," Carmouche pollster Jim Kitchens told Politico. “When you look at his record over a quarter of a century, he’s been a tough prosecutor.”

A real race?

The outgoing congressman told Politico that, despite John McCain's double-digit whopping of Barack Obama in the district, it isn't a cake-walk for Fleming.

“I think the race is going to be close, given the demographics of my district. Democrats have recruited an acceptable politician who has been in office for 30 years and who certainly can lay claim to be a much more conservative Democrat than Barack Obama is,” said McCrery. “The district isn’t as strongly Republican once you get below the presidential level.”

Negative campaigning? Nah....

The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee is in full campaign gear, stating that Cheney and Fleming have a lot in common. Says the DCCC:

  • "Both support tax cuts for millionaires like themselves.
  • "Both have opposed increases in the minimum wage."

If you are nostalgic for campaign commercials, you're in luck. Here's a YouTube (remember that site?) commercial from the DCCC.

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