Once the polls close at 8 p.m., election results for the Baton Rouge area and Louisiana will gradually update. While we wait, here's live commentary from City Hall reporter Blake Paterson.
10:17: It's official: With all precincts reporting, Sharon Weston Broome has defeated Steve Carter by a margin of 57% to 43%.
10:15: Gov. John Bel Edwards spoke to Broome's watch party via Zoome. "Baton Rouge made the right choice," he says. Broome took the stage to "Ain't No Stopping Us Now" by McFadden and Whitehead. "You believe like I do that our future in East Baton Rouge Parish is indeed bright."
9:44: Steve Carter called Sharon Weston Broome conceding the race.
9:26: There's one precinct left and 59 votes separating Cleve Dunn Jr. and Dawn Chanet Collins in the District 6 Metro Council race. The seat is currently held by Donna Collins Lewis, who is term-limited after serving for 12 years.
9:10: Television stations WBRZ and WAFB are projecting that Sharon Weston Broome has won a second term as East Baton Rouge mayor-president.
9:03: The crime rate took center stage throughout much of the race for mayor-president, and just yesterday, East Baton Rouge Parish reached a grim milestone with 108 homicides, making 2020 the most murderous year in known history. My colleague Lea Skene wrote about the crime rate here.
Carter said the Baton Rouge Police Department is understaffed and argued that morale was lacking among rank-and-file officers. Broome, meanwhile, attributed the rise to disruptions caused by the coronavirus.
Public safety and police pay were the topics that reverberated the loudest during the final debate Thursday night. Read our coverage here.
8:49: There are also six Metro Council seats up-for-grabs tonight, and depending on the outcome of two closely contested races, we could see big changes to the racial and political make-up of the parish’s governing body.
Check out my story here on what’s at stake and who is on the ballot.
8:23: Early voting numbers are in and Broome is leading with 61% of the vote compared to Carter at 39%, with about 8,000 votes separating them.
8:21: The coronavirus pandemic has upended most campaign norms, but it hasn’t stopped the candidates from hosting election night parties. Sharon Weston Broome is gathering with supporters at the Embassy Suites, while Steve Carter is hosting a get together at his house in Bocage Lakes.
Carter’s campaign originally planned to gather at Bergeron’s City Market but decided to downsize earlier this week out of an abundance of caution.
For more on how the coronavirus has changed politicking in the race for mayor-president, check out this story from my colleague Terry Jones.
7:30: The polls close in 30 minutes! If you’re waiting in line at 8 p.m., you’ll still be able to cast your ballot, though it’s unlikely you’ll wait too long.
Turnout today was, as expected, much smaller than Nov. 3, and there were very few lines throughout the parish, said Fred Sliman, a spokesperson with the Clerk of Court.
“It was a very smooth day. It slower than last time, but steady throughout the parish,” Sliman said.
Republicans maintained their 7-5 edge on the East Baton Rouge Metro Council on Saturday, retaining three seats after Democrats forced runoffs …
Voters in East Baton Rouge Parish selected two judges Saturday, one for the appellate court and another for the state district court.
Find the latest information and updates on the Dec. 5 elections below.
Louisiana voters will head to the polls once again this weekend to vote on a statewide constitutional amendment, a new East Baton Rouge mayor-…