The push to unseat District Attorney Mike Harson is moving full steam ahead, with the Keith Stutes campaign announcing at a fundraising fête Wednesday night that it has raised more than $160,000.
[Editor's Note: This story has been updated with details the Stutes campaign provided about the poll.]
|Photo by Robin May|
The push to unseat District Attorney Mike Harson is moving full steam ahead, with the Keith Stutes campaign announcing at a fundraising fête Wednesday night that it has raised more than $160,000. That’s quite a pace considering the former longtime assistant district attorney didn’t officially announce his candidacy until early September — a mere two months ago.
The campaign has a fundraising goal of $500,000 by the end of next summer.
At the event Wednesday at the Petroleum Club, the Stutes campaign’s finance chairman, Sam Landers, also revealed the results of a poll commissioned by Stutes about two weeks before he announced his candidacy. According to the Stutes campaign, Southern Media & Opinion Research conducted the poll of 400 likely voters in the 15th Judicial District Aug. 19-21:
"The poll placed Keith dead even with Mike Harson if the election were held then, with 33 percent undecided. That’s amazing. After voters were asked if they recalled the indictments for bribery, extortion and racketeering surrounding dismissing DUI charges for cash under Mike Harson’s leadership, the support for Mike Harson collapses with almost a 30-point swing in Keith’s favor and placed Keith at a 48-22 margin over Mike Harson. Now that’s truly astounding. The poll basically shows that the incumbent can’t survive."
The central figure in the DUI bribery scandal that had employees of Harson’s office pleading guilty to federal charges earlier this year is scheduled for trial in mid-December. Lafayette private investigator Robert Williamson pleaded not guilty in federal court last week, and this week his attorney, Thomas Damico, asked the court to delay the trial, saying his client is in need of immediate medical care and will not be available to help prepare for his defense.
It's not the first time Williamson has invoked his mental health as a reason for his inability to handle his legal affairs, telling the court in December 2012 that he is bipolar and schizophrenic. In January, however, he changed his mind. Read that story here.
An effort to prohibit employers from discriminating based on sexual orientation or gender identity was shelved Tuesday for the legislative session.
Louisiana won't lessen its penalties for marijuana possession, keeping laws on the books that allow people to be jailed up to 20 years for repeat offenses of having the drug in hand.
“This is one of the oldest divides that exists, and that divide is about the haves and the have-nots.”
It took a few weeks for the pitfalls to emerge in the governor’s $25 billion budget, but the time of judgment has finally arrived.
With pressure continuing to build for him to resign, Congressman Vance McAllister announced plans recently to remain secluded during the Easter break, but the Swartz Republican has said he’ll be back on the Hill casting votes and attending committee meetings when the congressional recess ends April 28.
A bid to limit the use of unmanned aircraft on private property in Louisiana stalled Monday in the Louisiana Senate.
A Shreveport lawmaker said Monday he's scrapping his proposal to name the Bible as Louisiana's official state book.
Here's your daily look at late-breaking national and international news, upcoming events and the stories that will be talked about Tuesday, April 22, 2014:
Tuesday's Blogs from the Bog!
Attorney hopes fellow lawyers will join him in urging the D.A. to step aside and allow a competent, ethical challenger to take over the scandal-ridden office.
An official with the Louisiana Department of Education was arrested on a range of charges Friday after allegedly breaking into a home and brandishing a knife.
State Rep. Stuart Bishop says he’s concerned with the quality of Capitol Lake, but when it comes to Louisiana’s coastline, this Lafayette Republican doesn't seem to give a damn.
Democrats sweating this year's elections may be hoping that the Obama administration's latest delay to the proposed Keystone XL pipeline takes a politically fraught issue off the table for the midterms.
Louisiana lawmakers are entering the second half of their three-month regular legislative session, which must end by June 2. Where some of the major issues stand:
Local and state agents Thursday night raided The Keg, the popular college bar located in the area known as The Strip, leading to the (at least) temporary closure of the venue.
Time and time again, the Lafayette Parish School Board shows an overwhelming tendency toward idiocy, but Wednesday night’s contentious discussion over Northside High School’s teen mother program tops the list of dumb discussions.
“The accomplishment of this goal within the next ten years is not only critical for the region to effectively compete with other regions for residents and businesses, but also to provide an amenity for everyone in Acadiana to enjoy.”
Education Superintendent John White says a continued push to try to keep Louisiana from using tests associated with the Common Core education standards are creating "a state of chaos" for public school teachers.
Gov. Bobby Jindal's plan to use $210 million in surplus and one-time money to help balance next year's budget received the backing Thursday of the State Bond Commission, support that was needed for the maneuver to work.
State wildlife and fisheries agents have arrested a 39-year-old man accused of stealing crawfish.
An East Feliciana Parish lawmaker has jettisoned his proposal to make it harder for a condemned prisoner to appeal a death sentence.
Senators advanced a proposal Wednesday that would let the governor remove New Orleans-area levee board members for violating what he considers to be public policy, despite concerns it would introduce political meddling into state flood protection.
The Lafayette City-Parish Council on Tuesday will vote on a resolution that if approved would clear the way for a December ballot proposition asking voters to approve a 1-cent sales tax parishwide to help fund the construction of a new terminal at Lafayette Regional Airport.
Just days before the fourth anniversary of the 2010 Deepwater Horizon disaster and oil spill, the Coast Guard has moved cleanup of Louisiana's coast to a new phase, allowing BP to end its "active" efforts in the area.
Legislators still must leave their guns at the door of the Louisiana Capitol.