That Sen. Mary Landrieu has become a lightning rod for our state’s reactionaries is a testament to their ignorance of history, current events and especially the U.S. Constitution.

I am a Republican, the first one elected to a local office in Louisiana since Reconstruction when I took office in Jefferson Parish in the late 1970s. Landrieu is a builder of coalitions, someone who is disciplined and able to maintain a focus on solutions rather than party politics. I might not always agree with her, but her actions have defended our citizens from catastrophes and brought major public works within our borders. If you care about job creation, you’d better include Landrieu as the No. 1 resource for both public and private projects in Louisiana. Our state received millions of dollars to repair the aftermath of several devastating hurricanes, especially Katrina, thanks to Landrieu.

The best that can be said of the senator’s opponent is that he has been an invisible member of Congress and, as such, simply voted “no” when my party told him to do so. We do not need another obstructionist in Congress. If the reactionaries would only read a history book, a newspaper and a copy of the Constitution, they might begin to understand the world around them. Unfortunately, their fear, shortsightedness and selective memory prevents anything from breaking through their zeitgeist.

Terry Verigan

former representative, District 8, Jefferson Parish School Board