Joseph Cao and the moderate delusion 

Rep. Anh “Joseph” Cao (R-La.) has been a model of bipartisanship during his short tenure in the House. Being from a heavily black, heavily Democratic district in New Orleans certainly contributes to this no doubt but if there’s anyone who can truly be said to be someone who “reaches out to the other side,” it’s Cao. He voted for the Obama health insurance bill the first time it came up in the House, supports carbon taxation regimes and has said how he “loves” President Obama.

Unfortunately for Cao, however, that love does not seem to be reciprocated by the Democratic party or by Obama himself. In his first general election advertisement, Obama took the opportunity to endorse Cao’s Democratic opponent, Cedric Richmond, a move which incensed Cao.  He seems mystified Obama did this and has, according to Fox News, been desperately trying to reach the president to talk about what he seems to think was just an honest mistake:

The Louisiana congressman is smarting after Obama used his first general election ad to endorse Cao’s opponent, Democrat Cedric Richmond. According to Cao’s campaign, he had hoped Obama would endorse him considering all he did for Democrats — like being the only Republican to cast a floor vote for the health care overhaul.

“He didn’t even have the courtesy (to call us)” before running the ad, Cao spokesman Devin Johnson told FoxNews.com. “That hurt the congressman. At least, he wanted that courtesy.”

But Cao says there must be an explanation — Obama must not have known about Richmond’s ethical problems.

“I believe that has happened in the congressional race for District 2 here in Louisiana,” Cao said in a written statement. “No one apparently told the president that Cedric Richmond had his law license suspended for lying to the voters; that he has been the subject of two ethics violations while a legislator.”

Cao isn’t the first moderate politician to have his outreach to the other party met with a campaign to oust him. He won’t be the last, either. This sort of thing happens with politicos of both parties it’s also worth noting.

Don’t expect Cao to get much sympathy either from the liberal establishment press which despite its blathering about being “moderate,” has exactly zero interest in protecting moderate Republicans from Democratic campaigns against them. Get them a moderate GOPer being assailed by conservatives and they’re all about moderation however.

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Matthew Sheffield

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