Barack Obama, John Bel Edwards (copy)

File photo -- President Barack Obama shakes hands with Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards after making a statement about the flooding following a tour of Castle Place, a flood-damaged area of Baton Rouge, La., Tuesday, Aug. 23, 2016.

Gov. John Bel Edwards is getting a last-minute boost to his get-out-the-vote efforts from former President Barack Obama, who recorded a robo-call earlier this week where he praises Edwards’ expansion of Medicaid and flood recovery and urges people to vote for him.

The robo-call, paid for by the Democratic State Central Committee of Louisiana, is about a minute long and also features state party chair Karen Carter Peterson, who introduces Obama, according to a recording posted to social media by the campaign of Congressman Ralph Abraham, one of Edwards’ rivals in Saturday’s election. 

Obama also recorded a robocall for Edwards in his runoff election against former U.S. Sen. David Vitter in 2015. 

“Hi, this is President Barack Obama. Today’s election day, and I’m reminding you to get out and vote for Governor John Bel Edwards,” Obama says on the call. “I know John Bel. He and I worked closely to expand Medicaid for working people. And we stood shoulder to shoulder to help Louisiana recover from devastating floods.

“He knows how to get the job done for Louisiana, turning a $2 billion deficit into a surplus. Investing in education and health care and reforming the state’s criminal justice system. Now we’ve got to protect this progress. So I hope you’ll head to the polls right now and vote for John Bel Edwards, number four on your ballot.”

The call was recorded Tuesday and went out to voters across the state, Democratic Party spokeswoman Allyson Sanders said, declining further comment.

Edwards’ camp is hoping the call will boost turnout among his base of Democratic voters--much like it did in 2015 in his race against Vitter, who Edwards trounced.

Now the only Democratic governor in the Deep South, Edwards faces Abraham and wealthy businessman Eddie Rispone in Saturday’s open primary. He is aiming to win the election outright by getting more than 50% of the vote.

Abraham’s campaign seized on the robocall late in the day Saturday, saying Edwards is “nervous and knows his days our numbered.”

If Edwards falls short of 50%, he will face either Abraham or Rispone in a Nov. 16 runoff.

Staff writer Stephanie Grace contributed to this story.

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