A Duck Dynasty-endorsed candidate won a runoff election in Louisiana for a seat in the US House of Representatives.
Successful businessman and military veteran Vance McAllister, a first-time candidate, easily defeated fellow Republican Neil Riser, a state senator supported by the party establishment and some Tea Party groups, for the state’s 5th Congressional District open seat.
The solid-GOP seat became vacant when incumbent Rep. Rodney Alexander resigned to join Gov. Bobby Jindal’s cabinet as veterans’ affairs secretary. Riser had finished first in the first round in October, but a runoff for the top two finishers (McAllister finished second with 18 percent) was necessary given that none of the 14 candidates in the nonpartisan primary broke 50 percent. McAllister, however, won 60 percent of the vote in Saturday’s election, in the campaign that he largely self funded.
McAllister received the endorsement of Willie Robertson of Duck Dynasty who called him “a good guy” in the above video. Phil Robertson also apparently endorsed McAllister. There was buzz at one point that Willie Roberston was being touted to run himself, but with a lucrative business and a sweet TV gig going, it was unlikely that he would actually throw his beard into the ring.
Both Republicans in the 5th District runoff shared similar views and are Obamacare foes. One difference, however, is that McAllister supported Medicaid expansion for the state under Obamacare. According to ABC News, “Riser and McAllister are both conservatives and largely agreed on many issues. Both oppose abortion, favor strong gun rights, and criticize the levels of federal spending and debt.”
Vance McAllister’s campaign website indicated that “… as a self-made businessman, Vance McAllister knows how government red tape and bureaucracy hurt small businesses and workers. In Congress, Vance will fight to turn the economy around by repealing ObamaCare, investigating the IRS, and stopping the march of big government into our lives.”
In an interview today, McAllister — an outsider who claims to have never even visited the nation’s capitol — said that the message of his victory was that “we intend to work together for the common purpose and that’s to make government work. That’s what we should be striving for.”
Do you think that the Duck Dynasty endorsement could have been decisive in putting Vance McAllister over the top?