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Gusts of wind blow the Louisiana state flag and American Flag near the State Capitol, Wednesday, March 13, 2019, in downtown Baton Rouge, La.

Today in The Rundown: It’s debate night in Louisiana, and the gubernatorial candidates will take the stage for the first time to hash out the major issues in the 2019 election on television!

Details: Gov. John Bel Edwards (D), Congressman Ralph Abraham (R) and businessman Eddie Rispone square off in front of a live audience on the LSU campus.

WVLA political reporter Fred Childers, WGMB anchor Chad Sabadie and KTAL anchor Jacque Jovic will moderate the event, which will also feature questions from LSU students.

Candidates will not make opening statements, but they will each get 30 seconds for closing remarks at the end of the hour-long debate.

Time: 7 p.m.

How to watch: Nexstar TV stations and websites in Baton Rouge (WVLA), Lafayette (KLFY), Shreveport (KTAL), Monroe (KARD) and Alexandria (WNTZ), as well partner TV stations in New Orleans (WGNO) and Lake Charles (KSWL). It will be simulcast on partner radio stations KSYL, KMLB, KRMD, KVOL, KLCL, News Talk 99.5 WRNO in New Orleans, and WJBO News Radio 1150 AM and 97.7 FM in Baton Rouge.

Follow along online: #LaGovDebate

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The Countdown…

Days until primary election: 23

Days until runoff: 58

Days until inauguration: 116

The News

Abortion: The U.S. Supreme Court will consider a Louisiana law that would require abortion providers have admitting privileges at local hospitals during its term that starts next month.

Governor’s race: U.S. Rep. Ralph Abraham, under attack by Republican rival Eddie Rispone, has picked up the first endorsement from a Republican member of the state's congressional delegation. Meanwhile, Gov. John Bel Edwards won the coveted endorsement from the Louisiana Sheriffs Association.

LA Gov: The governor’s race heated up this week when underdog Eddie Rispone launched two attack ads at the top candidates, including his Republican rival.

US Senate: Louisiana's John Kennedy made a name for himself by giving people back their own money through the state treasurer’s unclaimed property fund. Now he has a chance to replicate that success on the federal level by pressuring the U.S. Treasury Department to do more to pay out matured, unclaimed savings bonds under its watch.

Guns: U.S. House Minority Whip Steve Scalise rejected Democrats calls for gun control measures and faced down a pair of protestors on Wednesday.

Ag Commish: Climate change and marijuana laws have been big issues on the national stage this year, and have won prominence on one of Louisiana’s down-ballot races: Agriculture commissioner.

Saints: Here’s a deep dive into the thumb injury that QB Drew Brees is dealing with.

Via AP: Louisiana authorities have encountered products marketed as delivering the cannabis extract CBD but that instead were spiked with synthetic marijuana.

New Orleans: A former New Orleans building inspector ensnared in a wide-ranging federal probe of the city’s Department of Safety and Permits was fired in 2015 after he fell under suspicion of falsifying and deleting public records — years before the investigation at City Hall became public knowledge.

Happening today

At the Capitol

  • Gaming Control Board meets today at 10 a.m. in Room 3.
  • State Bond Commission meets today at 10 a.m. in Room A-B.

Coming up

  • The Press Club of Baton Rouge will host a forum for the three gubernatorial candidates on Monday, Sept. 23 at the Belle of Baton Rouge Hotel, Lunch, which is served at 11:30 a.m., is $15 for members and $20 for nonmembers.

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Elizabeth Crisp is The Advocate’s Washington, D.C. correspondent

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Email Elizabeth Crisp at and follow on Twitter, @elizabethcrisp.