Former Baton Rouge Metro Councilman Rodney “Smokie” Bourgeois says he’s running for mayor-president next year.

Bourgeois was a councilman for one term in District 12 before he lost his re-election bid to John Delgado. Bourgeois, known for his irreverent sense of humor, was an outspoken opponent of funding for downtown projects.

The Republican advocated against building a new library downtown, and he also spoke out against the dedicated property tax proposal to fund the Capital Area Transit System in 2012. Both measures passed.

Bourgeois, who owns the three George’s restaurants in Baton Rouge, has casually floated his candidacy for years. On Monday, he said he’s still “absolutely” going to run for the parish’s top spot.

So far, only State Sen. Sharon Weston Broome has officially announced her intentions to run. She will be a formidable opponent for anyone who jumps in the race.

Delgado, a Republican, is also a likely candidate, though he has not yet declared formally. Bourgeois said he wouldn’t run for his old council seat again, “because you can’t get anything done at the council.”


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