Joseph Cao Defeated: Cedric Richmond Wins Louisiana House Seat

01/02/2011 05:12 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011

NEW ORLEANS — Republican U.S. Rep. Joseph Cao has lost the election in his New Orleans-area district, a rare seat that Democrats were able to snatch from the GOP.

Democratic state Rep. Cedric Richmond won the 2nd District seat. With 57 percent of precincts reporting, Richmond had 63 percent of the vote to Cao's 35 percent.

Cao cast himself as a bipartisan friend of Democratic President Barack Obama. But votes against two key Obama initiatives, the economic stimulus and health care overhaul, were among Richmond's attack points in a mostly Democratic district that supported Obama for president.

Cao won the district two years ago in an election often cast as a fluke. Few voters turned out, and the election was delayed by hurricanes in a year that incumbent William Jefferson was under indictment.