Eva Kemp: Louisiana Needs Caroline Fayard As Its New Senator
September 17, 2016
Today in The Hill, DFER-LA’s Eva Kemp shares why Louisiana must elect Democrat Caroline Fayard as its next U.S. Senator.
by Eva Kemp, State Director of DFER-Louisiana
Recent polling released last week indicates Democrat Caroline Fayard from my home city of New Orleans, La., is a competitive contender for the seat being vacated by Sen. David Vitter (R-La.). This is exciting news for those of us who have long hoped to bring a voice of innovation and experience to Capitol Hill. Louisiana voters have a choice of 24 candidates on the ballot, leaving most bean counters scratching their heads at getting an accurate picture of how this race will look come Nov. 8. Last week, a poll completed by Anzalone Liszt Grove Research, Inc. shows Fayard is tied for second place at 13% with current Rep. Charles Boustany in an initial trial heat. Fayard and Boustany trail State Treasurer John Kennedy by 5 percentage points. Another Democrat hopeful, Foster Campbell comes in at single digits—just 7%. After the respondent was read bios of each candidate, Fayard ties with Kennedy for first place at 20%, with the next vote getter – Boustany – at 17%; Campbell remains in the single digits. See the full summary here.
All signs point to Fayard in a runoff. It’s our job to ensure she makes it to the Hill.
As the State Director for Democrats for Education Reform-Louisiana, I was proud to give Caroline our endorsement. With Caroline Fayard as Louisiana’s next Senator, families and children will once again have a champion fighting for them on Capitol Hill. Caroline Fayard understands that education is essential to bolstering Louisiana’s families. Not only will she work to preserve the gains our public school systems have made over the last decade, but Caroline will also work to ensure each student has access to a world-class education, regardless of their zip code or socioeconomic status. She’s committed to backing solutions that provide families a choice in getting a quality education, preserve the gains that have been thus far, prioritizing schools and students that are having a difficult time succeeding and building a qualified pipeline of teachers and leaders. She is the clear choice for Louisiana families.
Just a few years ago, I had the honor of serving as Democratic Sen. Mary Landrieu’s education adviser in Washington. I witnessed firsthand the impact she made on our state and the passion with which she worked in order to ensure that all kids in Louisiana had access to a great education- both in traditional public schools and public charter schools.
Sen. Landrieu was relentless in her pursuit of high-quality public school options for every student and family. As one of the founding members of the Charter School Caucus, Sen. Landrieu led the charge in Washington and across the country to build upon the success of high-performing charter schools as well as traditional public schools. She was responsible for ensuring that Title I dollars are prioritized for kids in our lowest income neighborhoods and helped get Louisiana $1.8 billion for the rebuilding of New Orleans schools, which is now the country’s fastest improving school district. A fighting spirit on behalf of Louisiana equal to that of Landrieu’s is absent in Washington. Her leadership and caliber are sorely missed in Washington, but especially back home in Louisiana.
With that in mind, it’s exciting to see a candidate like Caroline running for U.S. Senate. As a former Hill staffer, I know the importance of having the leadership, passion and fresh perspective that Caroline brings. Fayard has the potential to work her way up the leadership ladder of the Democratic Party, build leadership within the caucus and help regain the clout Louisiana lost in 2014.
Simply put, this new polling information is a game changer in the crowded U.S. Senate race. It’s critical that we come together to ensure we choose the right leader representing Louisiana come November. Learn more about Caroline here; and donate to her effort so that more Louisiana voters hear her message; Look for events in your area so you can see the excitement that I see in this candidate, one that offers a new path while staying true to the core values of the Democratic Party. She could just be the next big thing, y’all.
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