Roger Villere, chairman of the Louisiana Republican Party, says GOP donors may come together to repeat their 2007 money drive aimed at electing a Republican majority in the state House. Only this time around, the bucks will be directed at claiming all seven of Louisiana's U.S. House seats. "There's a lot of interest in that, even if it's only for one term," Villere says, referring to the change-up expected in district lines from the 2010 U.S. Census.
By all means, Republicans have a fighting chance. Presently, Rep. Charlie Melancon of Napoleonville is the only Democrat in the House delegation. But his 3rd Congressional District seat, which trends Republican, will technically be open next year as Melancon makes a bid for the U.S. Senate. The seat held by Congressman Anh "Joseph" Cao of New Orleans might be a bit trickier for the state GOP to hold onto, despite high hopes by Villere and others. Cao, who is facing an avalanche of serious Dem contenders, has supported President Barack Obama on occasion in the past. But will it be enough to soothe the concerns of his overwhelmingly Democratic district? Only time will tell. There is one thing Cao has going for himself: His own party has vowed to keep him off their major hit lists. — Jeremy Alford