After some initial uncertainty about the enthusiasm level among some of his fellow Republicans for his U.S. Senate bid, U.S. Rep. Bill Cassidy attracted some key GOP figures to a "unity rally" at a Baton Rouge bar last week to jump-start his runoff campaign against incumbent Democrat Mary Landrieu.
Landrieu narrowly led the Nov. 4 open primary, with 42 percent of the vote to Cassidy's 41 percent. Tea party favorite Rob Maness, a retired Air Force colonel, showed up to lend his name to Cassidy's campaign, and Family Research Council head Tony Perkins (who had threatened to withhold support) also signed on to Team Cassidy. U.S. Sen. David Vitter and Gov. Bobby Jindal both made an appearance at the rally, but in keeping with their frosty relationship, they were placed at opposite ends of the photo op.
Meanwhile, Cassidy shored up his tea party bona fides in north Louisiana with a scheduled Monroe appearance Nov. 15, featuring Maness, Duck Dynasty's Phil Robertson and former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, who had stumped for Maness in the primary.