Mary Landrieu letter: After Bobby Jindal’s misguided attack on education, it’s time for renewed focus _lowres

Mary Landrieu

Former U.S. Sen. Mary Landrieu is backing Democrat Caroline Fayard in Louisiana's U.S. Senate race.

Landrieu's endorsement -- the latest in the race as top Democrats splinter between Fayard and Public Service Commissioner Foster Campbell -- came during news conferences in New Orleans and Baton Rouge on Friday.

Flanked by women, Landrieu praised Fayard's energy and youth. Fayard is 38; Campbell is 69.

Outgoing U.S. Sen. David Vitter, a Republican, opted not to seek re-election after unsuccessfully running for governor next year, leaving a rare open Senate seat that has attracted 24 candidates on the ballot.

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Early voting in the Senate race runs Oct. 25-Nov. 1. Election Day is Nov. 8. A runoff will be held Dec. 10 in the likely event that no candidate gets more than 50 percent of the vote.

Under Louisiana's "jungle primary" system, all candidates will appear on the same ballot and the top two, regardless of party, will head to the runoff.

Fayard and Campbell have been locked in battle to become the Democrat who makes it into the runoff.

Gov. John Bel Edwards is a vocal supporter of Campbell.

Landrieu's brother, New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu, has also endorsed Fayard.

Follow Elizabeth Crisp on Twitter, @elizabethcrisp.