By Jesse Byrnes - 10/31/14 10:29 AM EDT
Republicans are slamming Sen. Mary LandrieuMary Landrieu oil is changing the world and Washington Ex-Sen. Kay Hagan joins lobby firm Republican announces bid for Vitter’s seat MORE (D-La.) for comments they say suggested Louisiana voters dislike President Obama because of his race.
Gov. Bobby Jindal and Landrieu’s GOP opponent in her tough reelection race, Rep. Bill Cassidy (R-La.), both pounced on comments she made to NBC’s Chuck Todd that the South “has not always been the friendliest place for African-Americans.”
Jindal said the comments were “divisive,” while Cassidy called them insulting.
“We're doing exactly what we're supposed to do — go to the polls and vote out the senator [who] supports him 97 percent of the time — and we're [called] racists,” Cassidy told Fox News.
“I think the people of Louisiana have been pretty long suffering. We're the ones suffering under ObamaCare,” Cassidy said, adding he “wished” Landrieu would “focus more on policies instead of insulting us.”
“Senator Landrieu’s comments are remarkably divisive. She appears to be living in a different century,” Jindal said in a statement tweeted Thursday evening.
“Her comments clearly imply that President Obama and his policies are unpopular in Louisiana because of his ethnicity,” the governor wrote on Twitter.
He argued Obama is unpopular in Louisiana because his administration has been “incompetent.”
“Trying to blame it on race is ridiculous,” he added.
Landrieu made the comments in an interview Thursday with Todd after she was asked to explain why Obama has a difficult time in Louisiana. Landrieu said that the president's energy policies “are really different than ours” before discussing race and gender.
“I'll be very, very honest with you. The South has not always been the friendliest place for African-Americans,” Landrieu told NBC News.
A second Republican candidate in the race, retired Air Force Col. Rob Maness, demanded that Landrieu apologize for the remark.