There’s a pretty lively race to succeed Charlie Melancon in the Louisiana Third Congressional District. Teabagger Jeff Landry is the front runner in a race for a seat that won’t exist much longer: the Gret Stet is poised to lose a seat when the census results are in. But Democrat Ravi Sangisetty (that’s right an Indian candidate in the land of LeBlancs and LaBordes) is running a pretty feisty underdog campaign. And Mr. Landry seems to have the odd skeleton in the closer or is that under his house? I’m not sure if Sangisetty is gaining any traction but he’s making it very entertaining; an important thing for me as y’all have surely noticed.
Late last week, Ravi Sangisetty, a candidate for Congress in Louisiana’s Third District, went on the offense against his Republican challenger Jeff Landry, a Tea Party favorite who emerged as the Republican nominee after a bruising primary against Hunt Downer, a retired National Guard Major General and former Speaker of the Louisiana House. Sangisetty’s campaign launchedDirtyLandry.com, which features, among other things, a stunning allegation that when Landry was a Sheriff Deputy in 1993, police recovered $10,000 worth of cocaine underneath his home and then arrested his roommate, also a Deputy, for possession with intent to distribute. Only a few months later, Sangisetty’s campaign claims, Jeff Landry turned in his badge.
“This is a little bit more than a “guilt by association” attack. Early this week, Sangisetty’s campaign put out a press release focusing on this allegation (bold mine):
Sangisetty for Congress Campaign Manager Julienne Uhlich said corruption follows Jeff Landry. She said Landry ran a disgraceful campaign against a good man like Hunt Downer, and Landry now has questions to answer about his involvement in a cocaine bust.
“Here’s what we know: While Jeff Landry was employed as a sheriff’s deputy, $10,000 worth of cocaine was stolen from the sheriff’s evidence room and found under his house. His roommate, also a sheriff’s deputy, was arrested for it and went to jail. Landry turned in his badge within months,” Uhlich (Sangisetty’s campaign manager) said. “There are only two explanations. Either Jeff Landry was a dirty cop and knew about the drugs, or he was the worst cop ever and couldn’t figure out that $10,000 worth of cocaine was being sold out of his house.”
Those are fighting words, and they probably merit a response from Mr. Landry. Was cocaine being sold out of his home? Who alerted the authorities? Was Mr. Landry surprised to learn that $10,000 worth of cocaine was stashed underneath his home? The answers to these questions are particularly important because Mr. Landry was, at the time, a law enforcement officer. It speaks to both his integrity and his competence. And if Mr. Landry has a legitimate response, then voters need to hear it.