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Bill Cassidy Leads GOP Rookies 

  Baton Rouge Congressman Bill Cassidy continues to outpace most of his freshman Republican colleagues when it comes to fundraising. Earlier this month, lawmakers filed financial reports for the third quarter with the Federal Elections Commission, and Cassidy came in second among GOP newbies with more than $680,000 in the bank, behind Rep. Erik Paulsen of Minnesota. The figure also places Cassidy atop the list of incumbents in Louisiana's House delegation. He technically trails Rep. Charlie Melancon, D-Napoleonville, who has $1.8 million in the bank, but Melancon is running for the Senate next year. The incumbent who came closest to having as much cash on hand as Cassidy was Rep. Charles Boustany, R-Lafayette, who has about $440,000 in his campaign kitty. Of the nearly $200,000 Cassidy raised during the third quarter, nearly 94 percent came directly from Louisiana residents, businesses and political action committees. — Jeremy Alford

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