Mary Landrieu's last stand?

After 18 years in the U.S. Senate and a lifetime in Louisiana politics, not even 100,000 mostly drunken revelers at a recent Louisiana State University football tailgate could shake her from her routine. Mary Landrieu knows she is locked in the toughest election battle of her career, and on this day, like most others, she stuck to her talking points and paid attention to detail — even as chaos erupted around her — right down to the brand of the single beer she nursed over the course of the day’s protracted, chaotic photo op: Abita, a local brew. One of the first tailgates she visited on a September Saturday here was hosted by her brother, Mitch, the mayor of New Orleans. It was there, a friendly oasis in a vast sea of purple and yellow tents and trailers, that the embattled Democratic senator gathered nearly two dozen volunteers donning “I’m With Mary” shirts and stickers, in a circle around her. Landrieu, acting like she was her own field director, split the larger group in half, dispatching one team to follow a staffer and another to follow her.

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