Shreveport mayor enters race against Sen. Bill Cassidy

Shreveport mayor enters race against Sen. Bill Cassidy
© Greg Nash

Shreveport, La., Mayor Adrian Perkins (D) announced Wednesday he’s launching a last-minute challenge to Sen. Bill CassidyWilliam (Bill) Morgan CassidyDavis: The Hall of Shame for GOP senators who remain silent on Donald Trump State aid emerges as major hurdle to reviving COVID-19 talks From a Republican donor to Senate GOP: Remove marriage penalty or risk alienating voters MORE (R) in what will likely be a steep uphill battle to unseat the incumbent.

Perkins, who announced his campaign just days before the qualifying period for the race ends Friday, underscored his decade of military service and the threat of the coronavirus pandemic in a launch video released Wednesday morning. 

“My grandad was a sharecropper right here in Bossier Parish. I’ve traveled many miles from those days, fought in two wars, but the road I’ve taken in life always led me back to the Louisiana I love,” Perkins, who served tours in both Iraq and Afghanistan, said.

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“I fought for our country abroad, and I’ll work here at home to improve our state for all Louisianans. Our country and state are at a crossroads. We face a virus that threatens our lives, our safety and our economy. This virus isn’t political, it’s deadly. But together, we can face the challenges of this moment head on," he added.

Perkins joins at least three other Democrats in the Senate race, though may have a leg up over his intraparty competition, as he is the only one currently serving in public office and has existing fundraising infrastructure.

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The Shreveport mayor’s video did not indicate if his campaign will lean more heavily on progressive or moderate platforms but did note traditional Democratic tones of railing against the “well-connected” in Washington.

"We can demand a government that serves all of our people, not just the wealthy and well-connected,” he said. “The road I’ve traveled has been an unlikely one. But I’ve gotten to this place, at this moment, through faith, family and always moving forward.” 

Still, Perkins will face strong headwinds in his challenge against Cassidy, who first won his seat in 2014 and finished the second quarter of 2020 with $6 million in the bank. He’s also won praise from President TrumpDonald John TrumpUSPS warns Pennsylvania mail-in ballots may not be delivered in time to be counted Michael Cohen book accuses Trump of corruption, fraud Trump requests mail-in ballot for Florida congressional primary MORE, who’s endorsed his reelection bid. 

The Cook Political Report, a nonpartisan election handicapper, rates the Senate race as “solid” Republican.