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Don Cazayoux

Don Cazayoux
U.S. Representative Don Cazayoux
United States Attorney for the Middle District of Louisiana
In office
June 22, 2010 – July 1, 2013
Preceded by David Dugas
Succeeded by J. Walter Green (acting)
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Louisiana's 6th district
In office
May 3, 2008 – January 3, 2009
Preceded by Richard Baker
Succeeded by Bill Cassidy
Member of the Louisiana House of Representatives
from the 18th district
In office
2000 – May 6, 2008
Preceded by Robert "Rob" Marionneaux, Jr.
Succeeded by Major Thibaut, Jr.
Personal details
Born (1964-01-17) January 17, 1964
New Roads, La.
Nationality American
Political party Democratic
Spouse(s) Cherie Cazayoux
Children Michael, Chavanne, and Katie Cazayoux
Parents Mr. and Mrs. Donald J. Cazayoux, Sr.
Residence New Roads, Louisiana
Alma mater Georgetown University
Occupation Attorney
Religion Roman Catholic

Donald J. 'Don' Cazayoux, Jr. (;[1] born January 17, 1964) is a former United States Attorney for the United States District Court for the Middle District of Louisiana, a position that he held from 2010 to 2013. From 2008 to 2009, he was a Democratic United States Representative from Louisiana's 6th congressional district.[2]

He won a special election held on May 3, 2008, to fill the seat vacated on Republican Congressman Richard H. Baker. He defeated Republican nominee Woody Jenkins and was sworn in on May 6, 2008.[3] In the regularly-scheduled general election held later that year, Cazayoux ran for re-election but was defeated by the Republican nominee, State Senator Bill Cassidy.

Early life

A native of Washington, D.C. After finishing his studies, Cazayoux practiced law and then became a prosecutor for Pointe Coupee Parish. As an assistant district attorney under the 18th Judicial Court District Attorney, Richard "Ricky" Ward, Cazayoux never lost a jury trial.

Political career

Louisiana Legislature

Cazayoux was first elected to the state legislature in 1999. He represented District 18, a heavily Democratic district that includes his home in Pointe Coupee Parish as well as Iberville, West Baton Rouge, and West Feliciana parishes. In the legislature, he became one of the few freshmen ever appointed to the powerful Appropriations Committee. He also worked for passage of laws to assist law enforcement in cracking down on child sexual predators.

After his reelection in 2007, Cazayoux attempted to become Speaker of the state House, but the position went to Republican Jim Tucker of the New Orleans suburbs.

Service in Congress 2008-2009

Cazayoux announced his candidacy for the 6th District shortly after Baker resigned. With the strong backing of the national party, he easily defeated fellow state representative Michael L. Jackson, who represents a portion of Baton Rouge, in the Democratic primary.

Cazayoux's Republican opponent in the special election was Louis E. "Woody" Jenkins, a newspaper publisher who represented part of Baton Rouge in the Louisiana House from 1972 to 2000, and had been narrowly defeated for election to the U.S. Senate in 1996. In the special election, Cazayoux received 49,702 votes (49.2 percent), to Jenkins' 46,741 (46.3 percent). Three minor candidates shared the remaining 4.52 percent of the ballots cast. Cazayoux clinched the seat with a nearly 5,000-vote margin in Jenkins' own East Baton Rouge Parish. Jenkins' greatest strength was in Livingston Parish, a heavily Republican suburb of Baton Rouge[6]

In his congressional bid, Cazayoux had the support of United Steelworkers,[7] as well as many traditional Democratic constituency groups. Cazayoux ran several ads making sport of difficulties people may have pronouncing his Cajun last name.

Cazayoux was the first Democrat to represent the 6th since four-term incumbent John Rarick was defeated in the 1974 Democratic primary. The seat was won that fall by Republican Henson Moore, who held it for twelve years before giving way to Baker in 1987.

Cazayoux lost his attempt for a full term in November 2008 to State Senator Bill Cassidy, who took 48 percent of the vote to Cazayoux' 40 percent. Jackson ran again, this time as an independent with funding from long-time Cassidy supporter Lane Grigsby.[8] He finished third,[6] garnering 36,133 votes, more than the 25,000-vote margin between Cassidy and Cazayoux, suggesting that he siphoned off many African-American votes that would have otherwise gone to Cazayoux and threw the election to Cassidy. The Daily Kingfish published photos of Jackson meeting with Congressman-elect Cassidy just three days after the election.[9] Cazayoux was one of five incumbent House Democrats to be defeated in the 2008 congressional elections, along with Nancy Boyda (D-KS), William J. Jefferson (D-LA), Nick Lampson (D-TX), and Tim Mahoney (D-FL).

Cazayoux's 2008 campaign was endorsed by Democrats for Life of America.[10]


Cazayoux is considered a moderate-to-conservative Democrat, which is typical for most Louisiana Democrats outside New Orleans. He strongly opposes abortion and gun control.[11] The latter stance earned him an "A" rating from the National Rifle Association.[12] He also supports expanding SCHIP, and favors withdrawing U.S. forces from Iraq. He calls himself "a John Breaux Democrat."[13]

Career after Congress

In April 2010, U.S. President Barack Obama nominated Cazayoux as United States Attorney for the Middle District of Louisiana, following a recommendation by U.S. Senator Mary Landrieu from May 2009.[14] Cazayoux was unanimously confirmed by the United States Senate for the position on June 22, 2010.[15] After stepping down as U.S. Attorney for the Middle District of Louisiana, Cazayoux announced the opening of the Cazayoux Ewing law offices in Baton Rouge and New Roads. Lane Ewing, a former assistant U.S. Attorney, is partnering with Cazayoux, who has also tapped former longtime assistant U.S. Attorney Stan Lemelle to join the firm. Lemelle recently retired after a 35-year career as a prosecutor with the U.S. Attorney's Office. [16]

Personal life

Cazayoux is a former president of the New Roads branch of the Lions Club (2002–2003). He and his wife, Cherie (married 1986), have three children.[17] Cazayoux is a distant relative of former U.S. Representative, the late Lindy Boggs [18] of New Orleans.[3]

See also


  1. ^ "Not Easy" posted by Cazayoux's
  2. ^ : New To the Web site 5/6/2008Office of the clerk, U.S. House of Representative
  3. ^ a b | News | Cazayoux takes oath, joins House — Baton Rouge, LA
  4. ^ "Jules Joseph Cazayoux, Jr. obituary".  
  5. ^ Louisiana House of Representatives - Internet Portal
  6. ^ a b Louisiana Secretary of State-Multi-Parish Elections Inquiry
  7. ^ Endorsement by United Steelworkers
  8. ^ Kraushaar, Josh (2008-10-24). "Strange bedfellows in Louisiana". Politico.Com. Retrieved 2014-08-18. 
  9. ^ [1]
  10. ^ "Act Blue" page of Democrats for Life
  11. ^ Cazayoux on the issues
  12. ^ - Dems Hopeful in La. House Race
  13. ^ "Been Fighting" posted by Cazayoux's
  14. ^ "Obama names former Dem Rep. Cazayoux as U.S. Attorney". TheHill. 2010-04-14. Retrieved 2014-08-18. 
  15. ^ "Senate Confirms Louisiana Nominees Cazayoux, Whitehorn, Harrison | Mary Landrieu | U.S. Senator for Louisiana". Retrieved 2014-08-18. 
  16. ^ "Former lawmaker and US Attorney opens law offices in B.R., New Roads". 2014-03-25. Retrieved 2014-08-18. 
  17. ^ Don Cazayoux for Congress | Meet Don
  18. ^ [2]

External links

Louisiana House of Representatives
Preceded by
Robert "Rob" Marionneaux, Jr.
Louisiana State Representative, 18th District
Succeeded by
Major Thibaut, Jr.
United States House of Representatives
Preceded by
Richard Baker
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Louisiana's 6th congressional district

May 6, 2008–January 3, 2009
Succeeded by
Bill Cassidy
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