With a ballot topped by a governor's race that is just now getting feisty, a week of early voting begins 8:30 a.m. Saturday.
Turnout is expected to be high on the first day of early voting for the Nov. 16 winner-take-all general election. Early voting takes the day off Sunday, then runs Monday through Saturday, from 8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily at all parish registrar of voters offices and at a handful of stations in the bigger cities like Baton Rouge, Lafayette and New Orleans.
About 28% of all 1.3 million votes cast in the Oct. 12 primary were during the week of early voting.
Democratic Gov. John Bel Edwards and his Republican rival, Eddie Rispone, are neck and neck in the governor’s race that headlines the ballot.
In addition, Louisiana voters are looking at a do-over in the secretary of state’s race as Republican Kyle Ardoin looks for a full four years against Democrat Gwen Collins-Greenup, whom he beat last year in a special election to fill out the remainder of Tom Schedler’s term after Schedler resigned amid sexual harassment allegations.
Republicans in the Louisiana Legislature are one seat away from having a veto-proof majority in the House — the Senate already has a two-thirds GOP majority. Twenty-four House seats and five Senate seats, out of the 144-seat Legislature, remain to be decided.
The balance of power in the House could come down to two closely-watched races in East Baton Rouge Parish.
The House District 62 race, which includes East Baton Rouge Parish as well as large portions of East and West Feliciana parishes, is a contest between Republican Johnny Arceneaux, a former Baton Rouge Community College administrator, and Independent Roy Daryl Adams, who operates a family owned grocery store.
In south Baton Rouge, voters will decide between two lifelong educators in the House District 70 race: Democrat Belinda Davis, an LSU political science professor, and Republican Barbara Freiberg, who currently serves on the Metro Council.
Voters in the New Orleans area will choose a new Louisiana Supreme Court justice, deciding between Will Crain, a state appeals court judge from Madisonville, and Hans Liljeberg, a state appeals court judge from Metairie. The winner will replace former Justice Greg Guidry, who was appointed to the federal bench.
At a debate during the primary election for governor last month, Eddie Rispone was asked for a yes-or-no answer to whether he would roll back …
And Lafayette is picking a new city-parish mayor-president between Carlee Alm-LaBar, who has no party affiliation, and Republican Josh Guillory.
In all, Louisiana’s 2.97 million registered voters will be looking at 175 elected positions and 123 local propositions statewide, though local ballots likely will be considerably smaller.
But the marquee race is at the top of the ballot.
Running for his first elective office, Rispone is well-known among Republican Party officials as someone willing to write big checks for GOP candidates and causes. He introduced himself through TV ads, backed by $11.5 million in his personal wealth he spent on the race, in which he tied himself to President Donald Trump. Rispone says Louisiana needs an outsider with business skills to guide the state through what he calls tough economic times.
Rispone hasn’t been specific about his plans for the state, but his most oft-repeated policy initiative is to rewrite the state’s constitution.
WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump will hold a rally in Monroe on Wednesday in support of GOP gubernatorial candidate Eddie Rispone, who is h…
Trump won the state by 20 percentage points in the 2016 presidential election and remains popular in Louisiana, though his numbers are lower nationally. He appeared before an exuberant crowd in Lake Charles the day before the Oct. 12 primary to rally Republican voters for Rispone and his GOP opponent, U.S. Rep. Ralph Abraham, and against Edwards. The president will be making a second trip to Louisiana on Wednesday, when he'll visit Abraham's Congressional district in Monroe, and possibly a third trip in Shreveport before the election.
Edwards focused on his record over the past four years, including expanding Medicaid health care coverage to include nearly half a million working poor, and ending years of budget deficits, which was accomplished through negotiation with a Republican-majority Legislature for a tax and budget deal. Once the budget was stabilized, he was able to push through the first pay raise for teachers in a decade this year and provide more money for public schools and colleges.
Edwards came within about 40,000 votes of winning the primary outright, garnering 626,000 ballots. Rispone received 368,318 votes, or 27%, of the total, which coupled with Abraham’s 24% of votes gave the Republicans the majority.
Edwards and Rispone are locked into a race that either could win. The margin of error in two polls released last week had virtually the same results. One poll was by JMC Analytics & Polling in Baton Rouge, and the other by Edgewater Research in New Orleans.
“Partisanship shapes preferences in this election, big time,” wrote Edward Chervenak, of Edgewater Research. “Neither candidate should expect any significant partisan crossover appeal.”
Gov. John Bel Edwards and Republican challenger Eddie Rispone are at odds on key public school issues, including what the next teacher pay rai…
Early voters should bring a photo ID, such as a Louisiana driver’s license, a Louisiana Special ID or the digital LA Wallet license. Voters without proper photo identification can still vote, but will have to sign an affidavit.
Early voters cast their ballots on new touchscreen voting machines.
Parishes with early voting locations additional to Registrar of Voters' offices
828 S. Irma Blvd. Rm. 20
200 Houmas St., Ste. B
Oak Grove Community Center
37433 La. Hwy. 42
East Baton Rouge Parish
222 St. Louis St. Room 201
Motor Vehicle Bldg.
2250 Main St.
11010 Coursey Blvd.
3851 Essen Lane
Central Branch Library
11260 Joor Road
29938 S. Magnolia St.
Denham Springs-Walker Branch Library
8101 US Hwy 190
1300 Perdido Street, Rm 1W24
225 Morgan St. Rm 105
Voting Machine Warehouse
8870 Chef Menteur Hwy.
Lake Vista Community Center
6500 Spanish Fort Blvd., 2nd floor
Joseph Yenni Parish Building
1221 Elmwood Park Blvd., Room 502
Charles Odom Building
5001 West Bank Expressway, Ste. C-2
408 Minor Street
Grand Isle Multiplex
3101 La. Hwy. 1
St. Martin Parish
St. Martin Parish Courthouse Annex
415 St. Martin Street
St. Martin Parish Water District No. 1 Building
1073 Tower Tank Rd.
Sydnie Mae Durand Senior Citizens Center
391 Cannery Road
St. Landry Parish
118 S. Court St., Suite 114
Eunice City Hall
300 S. Second Street