Sunday, May 11, 2008

Roundup of 4th District Congressional Candidates

UPDATE September 7th:
Updated post here:

Several people have announced their intention to run for the 4th District Congressional election in the fall. With the retirement of 10 term Republican Jim McCrery, the race is wide open. The district would seem to lean Republican by most standards, but that is not necessarily true. It is a conservative district, but I believe that a conservative Democrat could be elected.
Qualifying for the seat will be July 9-11. The following people have announced that they will seek the office.

John Milkovich of Shreveport
Milkovich, a Shreveport attorney, is an evangelical, pro-life, pro-2nd amendment Democrat who has announced (again) for the 4th District Seat. Milkovich ran in 2004 and garnered 27% of the vote against incumbent McCrery.
McCrery isn't running, the Republicans are in disfavor and the race is wide open.
Milkovich gained a high profile locally years ago when he proved the innocence of James Monds, who was on death row at the time. Milkovich fought against all odds for his client, incurring the displeasure of the system. He was even physically attacked in a hallway at the Bossier Parish Courthouse by a Bossier City detective.
But he got his man off death row. John Milkovich is a fighter.
He is well known in the area for his church work and is a regular speaker at different venues. Milkovich has been having a problem with his website, but has this one up at the present time. Visit his issues section; no party line there.

Willie Banks, Jr. of Leesville
For the last ten years, Banks, a Democrat, has served as Chapter 13 Bankruptcy Trustee for the Western District of Louisiana, Alexandria Division. He is a graduate of Southern University, where he received both Bachelor and Juris Doctorate Degrees.
Since his Military retirement as a Colonel in 1994, he has resided in LaCamp, La., a community in rural Vernon Parish. He has served on the Board of Directors of numerous Civic Organizations., and is a member of the Louisiana State Bar Association, The American Bar Association, National Bar Association, the Vernon Parish Bar Association and the National Association of Chapter Thirteen Trustees .
Mr Banks' challenge will be in finding support in the Shreveport/Bossier area, which contains more than half the population of the district.
His website is here.

Gerard Bowen, Jr. of Bossier City
Bowen, a native of Metairie, was displaced by Katrina in 2005 and relocated to the Shreveport-Bossier area. He graduated from East Jefferson High School in 1989, served in the Navy and holds a B.S. in Kinesiology from Washington State University as well as a Masters of Health Administration from Tulane University. Bowen is married and the father of two children.
A fair tax advocate, Bowen is the populist candidate on the Republican side. "I don’t have political connections, I don’t have deep pockets, and I don’t have political 'experience'. Some people will have you believe that these things make me a poor choice as your congressman, however, to you and I, it means that I owe no one any favors and that my loyalties are to my convictions and my only obligation is to the people of Louisiana.
I feel a Representative should be accessible to the people he represents, not just to deep-pocket contributors. Not only will I run a grassroots campaign, but I will run a grassroots office. I will be approachable and available to concerned citizens. I will continue to visit neighborhoods as much as Congressman as I do as a candidate and I will return phone calls."
The Bowen for Congress website is complete and includes personal information and his views on some of the issues.
He is definitely in an underdog position and may not recieve a lot of support from the entrenched Republican establishment. It will be interesting to see if he can resonate with the people and gain some traction.

Paul Carmouche of Shreveport
Carmouche is the Democratic District Attorney for the 1st Judicial District (Caddo Parish) since 1978.
This is sure to make the Republican establishment nervous, as Carmouche is a very popular proven voter-getter in Northwest Louisiana. Carmouche received his undergraduate degree from Nicholls State University and his law degree from Loyola University in New Orleans, where he was elected President of the Law School.Carmouche also served as an Assistant District Attorney and as Chief Counsel for the Caddo Indigent Defender’s Office. He was elected District Attorney for Caddo Parish 1978 and has served as Caddo Parish’s Chief Prosecutor for five terms. Carmouche has a website up, but it is new and the issues section isn't complete yet.

Dr. John Fleming of Minden
A Mississippi native, Republican Fleming has practiced medicine in Minden for the last 25 years. He is also an entrepeneur who owns thirty Subway Restaurants in North Louisiana and is also a sub-franchisor for The UPS Store, a subsidiary of UPS.Fleming is responsible for 130 UPS Stores across Texas, Louisiana, and Mississippi. On his website, which is very impressive, he has a personal narrative. It is worth reading as it will give you insight into who he really is and where he came from. "I haven’t forgotten eating Peanut Butter from surplus commodities cans. It’s the hard things in life that make us better. It’s remembering not having, that makes us appreciate what we have."
He also goes into great detail on the issues page.
We will be examining the issues more closely as the candidate field becomes more defined. Dr. Fleming does say that he wants to protect the constitution. I hope that means that he would stand in opposition to such intrusive laws as the USA Patriot act.

Chris Gorman of Shreveport
Gorman, a Republican, was born in Shreveport in 1969. He graduated from Trinity Heights Christian Academy where he was an all-state football player. In 1995, he earned a B.A.A.S. in Computer Information Systems from the University of North Texas in Denton, Texas. In 1999, Chris furthered his education and attended the Executive MBA Program at Harvard University. Gorman is the Executive Vice President of Tango Transport. In this capacity, he is responsible for leading the Sales, Information Systems, Maintenance, Billing and Collections Departments. He serves as a member of Louisiana Association of Business and Industry’s Energy Policy Committee and its Health Care and Education Task Force. He also has volunteered for the Shreveport-Bossier Community Renewal, Toys For Tots, the Northwest Louisiana Food Bank and his church. Gorman and his wife Jaci have two sons, Hunter and Lee. His website is not yet complete. I am anxious to see the issues section completed. I'm hoping that he will display some libertarian tendencies, and not just be another Republican rubber stamp. He will be an attractive candidate. It is an interesting twist, and speaks well for both father and son, that his 14 year old is manning a YouTube site with three videos posted so far. I'm impressed to see a teenager taking an active interest in his father's race.

Jeff Thompson of Bossier City
A lot of people were surprised when Jim McCrery endorsed Jeff Thompson as soon as he announced for the 4th Congressional District Seat.
Lanewslink offered in its commentary on the announcement that "Congressman Jim McCrery (R-Shreveport) raised more than a few eyebrows with his endorsement of unknown Bossier City attorney Jeff Thompson to replace him in the Fourth Congressional District seat. Even more puzzling is the fact that a supposed pro-business, Republican Congressman would get in bed with a known trial lawyer who makes a living off government contracts suing taxpayers."Politico noted that "Thompson is the first high-profile candidate in the Republican field, and with the congressman’s endorsement, should be the favorite to win the primary."Note to Politico: Thompson is not high-profile, thus the surprise from everyone.John Maginnis in his noted that other, more experienced potential candidates were baffled by the choice. "Rep Wayne Waddell, R-Shreveport, went into a meeting with Congressman Jim McCrery at the State Capitol on Tuesday expecting to get his support in the fall election to fill his 4th District seat. But the three-term legislator was surprised and chagrined when McCrery told him he would instead back Bossier City attorney Jeff Thompson. "McCrery is stepping down for a simple reason, regardless of what he gives as his official reason. In his last election, he pulled only 57% of the vote. Being accustomed to landslides, this, combined with the fact the the Republicans lost the house, was the handwriting on the wall. McCrery simply didn't want to take the chance of being forced into a runoff and losing. In any event, he was poised at the last election to become chairman of the powerful Ways and Means Committe, and instead has had to sit at the table with Chairman Charlie Rangel. I'm sure this taken a lot of the fun out of the job for him.Yahoo News reported that "Jeff Thompson, the latest candidate for the open U.S. House seat in Louisiana's 4th District, was not the first Republican to enter the contest to succeed retiring GOP Rep. Jim McCrery. But Thompson entered with a credential that could be particularly helpful to him: the endorsement of the popular incumbent, who has served in the House since 1988 and is leaving as ranking Republican on the influential Ways and Means Committee." Which raises the question: Is McCrery's endorsement a help or a hindrance to Thompson? He certainly has not generated good feelings with Dr John Fleming or Chris Gorman, who are already running active campaigns for the seat. Apparently, State Rep Waddell is not too thrilled either.
My judgment is that McCrery's endorsement is not worth much. I'm not sure that it will even get Thompson the Republican nomination, but whoever does represent the Republican Party in the election will have a battle on their hands.
If Thompson has a website up, I was unable to find it in any search.


  1. Wow, this Gorman guy is really picking up steam. I've gotten like 5 personal letters from him already!!!
    If heworks this hard in congress he'll be the best congressman ever!

  2. I had a complaint about political campaigning in my neighborhood, and Dr. John Fleming met with me personally to understand the problem and work to correct it. I'm wasn't a support of his at the time, but I really am now. He's pro-active and accessible, honest and hardworking. He has the qualifications we need to do the job right!

  3. Your blog keeps getting better and better! Your older articles are not as good as newer ones you have a lot more creativity and originality now keep it up!

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