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Louisiana: LaFonta Staying Put in 2nd District Primary

One week after fellow state Rep. Cedric Richmond (D) formally launched his bid in the 2nd district, state Rep. Juan LaFonta said Monday that he is moving ahead with his plan to win the Democratic nomination in the New Orleans-based seat.

LaFonta said he will file with the Federal Election Commission on Oct. 1 and has already signed on Bill Fletcher of the Nashville, Tenn.-based firm Fletcher, Rowley, Riddle Inc. to serve as his media consultant. The firm has handled media for the Bayou State’s sole Democratic House Member, Rep. Charlie Melancon, and the company did work in the previous cycle for the Democratic nominees in the 4th and 7th districts.

LaFonta is also planning a trip to Washington, D.C., next week for a series of meetings to round out his campaign team.

When he became the first Democrat to file for the race last week, Richmond said he was hoping to avoid another crowded primary like the one that took place in 2008, which was won by disgraced former Rep. William Jefferson (D).

“There’s no turning back. I’m committed to running,— LaFonta said. “The concern now is directed at fundraising. In a Congressional race, that’s the biggest thing you have to overcome.—

LaFonta said he believes he’ll need to raise $1.5 million to $2 million to beat freshman Rep. Anh “Joseph— Cao (R), who is considered the most vulnerable incumbent of the 2010 cycle.

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