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A story that implicitly accuses a prominent Louisiana Republican Congressman of racism is the third time in recent months that Democrats have pinned their hopes on a blogger named Lamar White, Jr.

After two huge public failures that relied on his work, will the third time be the charm for neoliberal new media and Mr. White?

Monday, a story uncovered by the White’s political blog CenLamar sprang up on the websites and twitter feeds of Democrats: House Majority Whip Steve Scalise Was Reportedly an Honored Guest at 2002 International White Supremacist Convention.

The lede read:

According to recently uncovered posts on Stormfront, the Internet’s oldest and most notorious white nationalist and neo-Nazi forum, the United States House Majority Whip, Steve Scalise (R- Louisiana), was allegedly an honored guest and speaker at an international conference of white supremacist leaders.

His district may have ignored it at the time, but the American public can’t.

Liberal Democrats began to lick their chops immediately. MSNBC ran the headline “Hate groupie?” Twitter anti-Rush Limbaugh activist Matt Edelstein aka @Shoq was giddy with excitement:

Even though the Democrats smell chum in the water, the story smacks of a poltical smear trotted out in the news void between Christmas and New Year’s Eve. As Lousiana conservative political blogger Scott McKay from the Hayride said:

And this is without a doubt a smear – if 12 years isn’t long enough for the statute of limitations to have run on the crime of giving a policy speech not alleged to be irresponsible or unacceptable to a disfavored group you otherwise have no affiliation with, then how long does that statute of limitations last? One would have thought it’s less than 12 years given the kid gloves Democrat hacks like White treated ex-Kleagle Robert Byrd with, or the feigned ignorance about Harry Reid’s recent and even current racist statements about blacks and Asians.

So, who is the blogger behind the Scalise story? Lamar White, Jr. is a liberal investigative journalist and blogger who primarily covers politicis in Louisiana and Texas. White, has cerebral palsy and uses a wheelchair, is also a passionate “disability rights” activist. An interesting side note for those of us who knew, loved or respected the late Andrew Breitbart: Lamar was also the last person that conservative firebrand publisher Andrew Breitbart sent a Twitter message to. After debating on Twitter on and off for a couple of days Breitbart’s last tweet was a note of civility: apologizing to White after a heated conversation.

To his credit, White matched that civil tone when he was quoted after Breitbart’s sudden death, telling ABC News: “I profoundly disagree with him on a number of issues… but you can’t deny that Andrew Breitbart had verve and panache.”

The Democrat’s Great White Hope

More recently, White and his work have been trotted out as last-minute components of two recent elections in Louisiana and Texas. In both cases, the results were landslide losses

Clearly, the Democrats are currently desperate for anything resembling a victory. First, there was the devastating midterm elections that saw them lose control of the Senate and now they are trying to change the focus of the race narrative in the wake of the brutal killing of two NYPD officers.

However, if history is any judge, pinning their hopes on a Lamar White Jr., isn’t a winning strategy. Let’s look at White’s record this year.

The Texas Gubernatorial Race

Democrat Wendy Davis had a big handicap problem when she ran against Republican Greg Abbott to be Governor of Texas this fall.

Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott was confined to a wheelchair after an accident.

The problem for Davis began when muckraking video journalist James O’Keefe put out a devastating expose in January that showed Davis supporters working with the neoliberal activist group Battleground Texas actually mocking Abbott for his impairment.


This didn’t look good for Davis, of course. However, as the campaign wore on the January story was largely forgotten…until Davis herself ran what became known as “The Wheelchair Ad.”

Just weeks before the election, Davis was trailing by about fifteen points in the polls when she ran an attack ad that featured a bleak image of a wheelchair. To say the least, it was…well, just watch…


Davis was lambasted for the ad. Even mainstream sources took note including USA Today, who said Wendy Davis TV ad focuses on Abbott in wheelchair. CNN ran the headline Wendy Davis ad uses wheelchair to criticize paralyzed foe Abbott..

Almost immediately, Davis fought back and called a press conference where she surrounded herself with several supporters in wheelchairs, including White. As the Washington Examiner reported:

…prior to Davis addressing her widely panned attack ad, Lamar White, Jr., who has cerebral palsy, gave a short speech. When he was finished speaking, a Davis campaign staffer dragged White to the side of the stage so that the podium could be raised.

White in an interview with the Houston Chronicle addressed his being dragged across the stage: “I’m clumsy, and I fall sometimes. I didn’t want to fall on camera, so I personally asked them to slide me over in the chair … I asked them to move me. Because I was worried that if I stood up, I’d fall down on camera.”

Some critics of Wendy Davis felt that White and the others had been used as a campaign props to illustrate that Davis supported people with disabilities. This angered White, who had volunteered to speak for the Democrat he supported. White responded with a angry piece that the liberal press ate up. As White wrote:

I sent out a tweet, to no one in particular: “I am a human being. Not a campaign prop. I volunteered to speak because Wendy Davis is right.” The next day, my tweet was the headline of an article in Salon.com and was quoted in the pages of The New York Times.

That’s high potency coverage. The results?

Wendy Davis suffered an even worse loss than expected: 20 points, with 59% going to Abbott and 39% Davis. As Politico said: Wendy Davis trounced by Greg Abbott in Texas guv race.

The Louisiana Runoff

The investigative work of Lamar White was also a key subject in the runoff Senate race between the three term incumbent Democrat Mary Landrieu and Republican congressman Dr. Bill Cassidy.

Because of Louisiana’s election laws, there was no winner declared in the November race for the Senate seat. Landrieu and Cassidy headed for a December face-off, but Democrat Landrieu was facing an uphill challenge with the sunken approval ratings for Pres. Obama.

Landrieu urgently needed some new issue to go after Dr. Bill Cassidy: blogger Lamar White Jr., provide the ammunition.

White and a blogger named Jason Berry broke a story that accused Cassidy of getting paid for teaching work at Louisiana State University that the bloggers said Cassidy never did while he was serving in Congress. As the TownTalk.com wrote:

A blogger from Alexandria focuses on the “circus of Louisiana politics,” and he thinks the controversy over Congressman Bill Cassidy allegedly padding his salary in his work for the LSU Medical Center would fall under the circus’ big top.

“It’s a prime example” of the colorful nature of Louisiana politics, but Cassidy’s actions are also a serious matter that deserve to be officially investigated, said Lamar White, Jr., who was one of two Louisiana bloggers to break the story about Cassidy’s questionable billing for payments by LSU.

This controversy quickly became the focal point of Mary Landrieu’s campaign. Because of the accusation that he was paid for work twice, Landrieu supporters began referring to Cassidy as “Double Bill” Cassidy.

I spent time on Louisiana in the week before the runoff election the “Double Bill” strategy was THE thing that Landrieu was running on. It was all they had. They had protestors chanting about Double Bill everywhere Cassidy went. At a speech I covered that Landrieu gave, she harped on the Double Bill issue and even claimed Cassidy would likely face indictment. Landrieu also brought it up repeatedly in a televised debate days before the election.

Lamar White Jr., had achieved what is every blogger’s dream: a story he’d helped break became the central issue in a major campaign for a federal election. White’s Double Bill story was covered by national media, featured in campaign ads and talked about endlessly by Senator Mary Landrieu.

The results?

Incumbent Democrat Landrieu lost in a Double Digit blowout to Republican Bill Cassidy, losing by a 56 to 44 margin.

The Democrats are once again pinning their hopes on Lamar White, Jr. It remains to be seen whether he’ll finally get a victory.

4 Responses

  1. Jack Armstrong

    Well written article. Gets the facts out there and points out the time lag of 12 years. I get the feeling this is a “who cares” story with the good folks in Louisiana.

    Thanks for covering this.

    Reply
  2. SCOTT

    Agreed! The good people of Louisiana saw through Mary Landrieu’ s nonsense, and spoke loudly at the ballot box. As for White, well, he’s clearly the type who wants people to feel sorry for him while he makes up and says anything he wants to champion his liberal beliefs. Seems that in our current era ‘customer service’ jobs handled by agents answering phones and inputting information into computers, he could get a job.. No?

    Reply
  3. Gene Webb

    This young man has already been discredited regarding his story about Steve Scalise. Perhaps doing some research before publishing a smear job would have been appropriate.

    Reply

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