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House Civil Law Chairman Raymond E. Garofalo Jr., R-Chalmette, meets with Baton Rouge Democratic Sen. Yvonne Colomb on the Senate floor June 5 to go over possible changes to legislation that would set a minimum age for children to marry in Louisiana.

State Sen. Yvonne Colomb criticized fellow Democrat Cleo Fields on Tuesday after Fields said Colomb's Senate service was so lackluster that it was like the post has been vacant for a dozen years.

Colomb, who endorsed Fields' District 14 rival Patricia Smith, said Fields should be running in the Senate district where she said he lives – near the Country Club of Louisiana, and well away from his official residence.

The spat between the incumbent and her possible successor began Monday during Fields closing comments to the Press Club after an hour-long forum with Smith.

"District 14 has been without a senator for 12 years," Fields said, a reference to Colomb's term.

"That is wrong," he said. 

"I am running because we need a senator, you know? This is a not game. People's lives are at risk."

Colomb on Tuesday heatedly disputed Fields' assessment of her tenure.

She said state aid for LSU and Southern University has risen during her time in the Senate and Downtown has experienced heavy growth – all within her Senate district.

"That did not happen by accident," Colomb said.

"The whole district has grown," she said. "There is so much economic growth in the district it is ridiculous."

Fields is trying to reclaim the Senate post he held from 1997-2007.

Smith, also a Democrat, is a state House member who is being forced out by term limits.

Where Fields lives has been a recurring topic during the Senate race.

Fields has repeatedly said that, while he owns multiple homes, his homestead exemption is for his longtime residence at 5347 Hollywood St., which is in Senate District 14.

He also owns a home on Highland Crossing, which is near the CCLA and in Senate District 16.

How he divides his time between the two homes is unclear.

Sen. Dan Claitor, R-Baton Rouge, holds that Senate post but he is also being forced out by term limits, setting off a five-person race to succeed him.

The contest between Fields and Smith will be settled in the Oct. 12 primary.

Email Will Sentell at wsentell@theadvocate.com.