Nathan Stubbs

Cao is now

by Nathan Stubbs

It's hard to turn anywhere without seeing another story on Congressman Joseph Cao, the unlikely successor to Bill Jefferson in Louisiana's 2nd District. Cao, a Republican who won election in a district that went 75 percent for Barack Obama, was the lone GOP vote in favor of the health care reform bill that recently passed the House. At a time when bipartisanship increasingly seems a thing of the past, Cao is all the rage. Cao's interview schedule, just for today, according to the Times Picayune, includes: The Associated Press, USA Today, Greta Van Susteren, Rachel Maddow, CBS, Tavis Smiley, and possibly National Public Radio.

While Cao now finds himself being attacked by both sides — Republican party leaders have expressed their disappointment, and Cao's already announced opponent in his 2010 re-election bid, Cedric Richmond, criticized him for inconsistent support — the congressman has won accolades from a leading health care reform advocacy group, Americans United for Change, which will spend $35,000 running the following ad in the New Orleans market throughout the week.