Clay Higgins Represents The Worst Part Of Louisiana’s Culture

Clay HigginsLouisiana is known for its colorful political figures. The state has a long history of populists who have brought periods of prosperity, scandal and national attention – both good and bad. The notorious Huey P. Long ran an iron-fisted tenure as governor and senator that angered the oil industry, and even posed a threat to the reelection of Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1936.

Decades later, Edwin Edwards served 4 terms as governor before being jailed on federal charges in 2002. Despite being notoriously corrupt, they were both extremely popular with Louisiana residents. In 1991, Edwards won the gubernatorial election over former Klan leader David Duke. This was an election where voters were reminded to “Vote for the Crook. It’s Important” and he won in a landslide.

In recent years, many of Louisiana’s elections have taken on the nasty spirit of the national political atmosphere. Last year’s surprise win for conservative Democrat John Bel Edwards over David Vitter was one of the most vicious campaigns I have witnessed in my three decades of politics. Despite being a Republican, David Vitter lost because he was hated, even by members of his own party like departing governor Bobby Jindal who refused to endorse Vitter.

Louisiana may seem like a laid-back state full of swamps, alligators and quaint Cajun culture. Sadly, there is an angry, bigoted undercurrent which worships populist figures like Donald Trump who have no real plan for making things better.

Into this new political reality steps a former sheriff’s deputy who seems to have carefully been plotting a run for political office since he stepped into the public eye. That man is Clay Higgins, the former popular and bombastic Crime Stoppers figurehead who became famous for his videos in which he profiled local criminals wanted by law enforcement. These videos went viral, especially when he assembled a group of local agencies to stage a clip in which he called out a local gang.

Clay Higgins immediately drew criticism from both law enforcement and the ACLU. Accused of using his uniform to promote himself and his clothing line, Clay Higgins was pressured into resigning from the St. Landry Parish Sheriff’s Office.

His resignation drew thousands of angry responses from supporters of the “Cajun John Wayne” as Higgins became known as. While neither Cajun or apparently authentic, the former car dealership director became a beloved figure with citizens who love the ideas of vigilante justice laced with thinly-veiled racism.

Now Clay Higgins has announced that he is running for the congressional seat being vacated by Charles Boustany, a quiet but staunch conservative who is seeking the U.S. Senate seat disgraced David Vitter is leaving. I’ve met Charles Boustany in person, and while I certainly disagree with him on political issues, I do respect the man for not being a bombastic celebrity-seeker.

The same can’t be said for Clay Higgins who is hoping to ride on the coattails of Donald Trump’s popularity with low-information voters across the country. Higgins represents the worst of Acadiana. He is little more than the angry comments section of our local new stations toned down, given a better vocabulary, and wearing a uniform. In fact, he announced his run for Congress promising to be a “loud, angry voice” in Washington.

Louisiana is already a national embarrassment. We rate among the worst states for health, obesity, education, pollution, corruption, unemployment and incarceration. This state needs someone who will put their interests on the back burner and work to undo decades of mismanagement, corruption, and a dependence on the fossil fuel industry.

Clay Higgins will not make America great again. He will not make Louisiana great again. Clay Higgins is in this race for one thing alone, his personal gain at the expense of the people he seeks to represent.



About Manny Schewitz 462 Articles
Manny Schewitz is a progressive and registered Democrat currently living in Lafayette, Louisiana. He is a co-founder of Modern Liberals and an unapologetic liberal who supports gun regulations, abortion rights, and Bernie Sanders. Manny is on Facebook, Instagram and you can follow him on Twitter as well.
  • Marielle

    Wow… Do you even live here? Because if you do, and you think this state is so terrible, LEAVE!!! How about not bashing someone who has admitted he is flawed, in a public forum no less, but shows true spirit and heart to help the state he truly loves?? His viral video was never meant to go viral, but did because people were exhilarated at the thought of someone finally standing up to the rampant crime sprees happening in several parishes due to the criminals in a GANG. I hardly think that law enforcement standing up to a gang is racist or bigoted, but PC runs the show these days. That video was approved by the sheriff from concept to production, he just didn’t have the balls to stand up to the ignorant and PC fools who had a temper tantrum… Clay Higgins is a needed force in our political world. With so much corruption and bs he is a breath of fresh air.
    And you, sir, are an imbecile for even writing such a distasteful and ignorant rant.

    • Show me on the doll where the internet hurt your feels.

      • Marielle

        Cute reply. Predictable, but cute…
        Let’s use a tired internet meme to show that we can’t form an intelligent response to an opposing view.

        • Black and Blue

          You can always tell when a liberal does not have the intellectual capacity to enter into an intelligent conversation, they resort to screaming XXXist (in this case racist), something the author stated early in his mindless screed.

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