Ed Driscoll

"In Louisiana, Voters Oust An Indicted Congressman"

The Gray Lady sadly notes:

Representative William J. Jefferson was defeated by a little-known Republican lawyer here Saturday in a late-running Congressional election, underscoring the sharp demographic shifts in this city since Hurricane Katrina and handing Republicans an unexpected victory in a district that had been solidly Democratic.

The upset victory by the lawyer, Anh Cao, was thought by analysts to be the result of a strong turnout by white voters angered over federal corruption charges against Mr. Jefferson, a black Democrat who was counting on a loyal base to return him to Congress for a 10th term.

A majority of the district’s voters are African-American, and analysts said lower turnout in the majority black precincts on Saturday meant victory for the Republican.

With all precincts reporting, Mr. Cao, who was born in Vietnam, had 49 percent of the vote to 46 percent for Mr. Jefferson, who had not conceded as of late Saturday night.

To paraphrase The Sweet Smell of Success, the cat’s in the bag, and the bag’s in the freezer.

Taken back-to-back, the last two paragraphs of the Times article are a hoot:

Mr. Cao, 41 and known as Joseph, fled Vietnam at age 8 after the fall of Saigon. His father was a army officer who was later imprisoned for seven years by the Communist government. Mr. Cao, who has never held elective office, has been an advocate for the small but prominent Vietnamese community here and has a master’s degree in philosophy from Fordham University.

“Knocking Jefferson off is something you don’t want to bet on,” Elliott Stonecipher, a Louisiana political analyst, said Saturday night. “These elections continue to show us that there is a smaller, different and more progressive New Orleans that is emerging.”

So electing a Republican who mercifully escaped Vietnam after American liberals of the 1970s left the nation to be slaughtered by the Vietcong and who ousted one of the most infamously corrupt Democrats of recent years counts as a “more progressive New Orleans”?

Hey, fine with me! It’s rare that the Times sees a move to the right as progress, but I’ll take it.

Update: Over at The “Moderate” Voice, Jazz Shaw makes a cheap shot that moves by so quickly, it’s worthy of the drive-by legacy media:

Ed Driscoll doesn’t seem terribly interested in a post-racial society, but will take a win in the GOP column any day of the week.

Hmmm–how does Jazz know I’m not “interested in a post-racial society”? Isn’t a Vietnamese immigrant becoming a congressman in a district in which, as the Times article I quoted above notes, “a majority of the district’s voters are African-American” actually a perfect example of a post-racial society?