If you’re not a Republican, but you want to vote in the GOP’s closed primaries, then you have only two more days to visit your local registrar of voters.
If you’re not a Republican, but you want to vote in the GOP’s closed primaries, then you have only two more days to visit your local registrar of voters. That’s because the Louisiana Republican Party will only allow Republicans to vote in their Aug. 28 primaries for the U.S. House and Senate.
The primaries scheduled by the state’s Democratic and Libertarian parties, meanwhile, will be open to unaffiliated voters, including those registered as other, independent or none. Republicans, however, will not be able to take part — that’s unless, of course, they change their party affiliation in time for next month’s closed primaries, which state law permits to happen up until close of business Wednesday afternoon.
Louisiana conducted open primaries for federal elections, where all candidates face off on a single ballot, until 2008. And, due to widespread confusion at the polls in recent years due to the closed primary system, the Legislature voted earlier this summer to return the state to a open system beginning in 2011. But for now, Louisiana has one last cycle under closed federal primaries.
In the 3rd Congressional District, which encompasses portions of Acadiana, each of the four candidates offers different attributes and strengths for their respective party primaries. None, though, are as well positioned as Houma attorney Ravi Sangisetty, who, as the only Democrat in the race, has already won his primary contest. As such, Sangisetty advances directly to the Nov. 2 ballot where he will face the victor of the Republican primary, which is considerably more crowded.
To be sure, the three Republicans in the 3rd District race are making a push to convert voters. For example, the campaign of Jeff Landry, a New Iberia attorney, has been e-mailing supporters for days about the upcoming deadline to change parties. “This is a critical election,” Landry wrote in one e-mail. “(President Barack) Obama and (House Speaker) Nancy Pelosi’s liberal Congress continue to force their leftwing agenda down the throats of the American people. Their stimulus did not stimulate, and we still have an unemployment rate near 10 percent.” Landry, in particular, has been picking up support from the religious factions of his party, most recently securing the endorsement of the political arm of the National Family Research Council, a conservative, Christian-advocacy group. Landry’s campaign manager is also Phillip Joffrion, a former field director for Gov. Bobby Jindal who vacated his post as political director of the Louisiana Republican Party to join the campaign.
Former state House Speaker Hunt Downer, once a registered Democrat earlier in his political career, is directing voters on his Web site to the appropriate paperwork needed to switch parties. Downer, a Houma native, has found support among the state party’s traditional base — the Jefferson Parish Republican Party has already announced its backing — and he has received donations from many of the party’s biggest contributors. Kristian Magar, an oilfield manager from New Iberia and the final Republican in the race, is running a true grassroots campaign with financials that are significantly smaller than his opponents’, but he did receive the endorsement of America’s Independent Party Affiliates recently, which is a conservative offshoot of the GOP with a chapter in Louisiana.
Overall, the 3rd Congressional District includes more than 400,000 voters, of which 223,500 are Democrat, 86,400 are Republican and 93,000 are defined as “other.” The 139,000 voters in Lafayette Parish include 57,600 Democrats, 45,500 Republicans and 36,000 other-party voters.
The Aug. 28 election will also play host to closed primaries for the U.S. Senate race. There are three Republican candidates, including Nick J. Accardo, Chet Traylor and incumbent U.S. Sen. David Vitter. The Democratic Party has three candidates, including Neeson J. Chauvin, Jr., Cary J. Deaton and U.S. Rep. Charlie Melancon, who is vacating the 3rd Congressional District to make his bid. For the first time in Louisiana history, the Libertarian Party also has two candidates for a primary election, including Anthony Gentile and Randall Todd Hayes. William R. McShan was the only candidate who qualified for the Reform Party and will progress to the November general election, even though his party would normally be allowed to hold a closed primary.
We can safely assume incumbent Chief K.P. Gibson isn’t too worried about this challenger.
Nationally, Republicans must gain six seats to win Senate control. The most competitive races, many in states where Obama lost in 2012, remain too close to call.
The Baton Rouge Republican has repeatedly battled a perception within his own party that he perhaps wasn't the best choice to carry the GOP banner.
Even if Jimmy Graham's production dips while the star tight end recovers from a shoulder injury, it looks like Drew Brees won't have much trouble finding other targets.
A former campaign manager for Senate candidate Rob Maness is striking at the Republican contender's tea party support, saying Maness only sought to appeal to conservative organizations because he needed money for his campaign.
Ninety-two percent of public school teachers were rated either effective or highly effective in a report the state issued marking the second year of a new statewide evaluation process.
Corporations spending in state elections; Kenny G and Hong Kong; states resist gay marriage and more national and international news for Thursday, October 23, 2014.
Thursday's Blogs from the Bog!
School board members Mark Babineaux, Hunter Beasley and Tehmi Chassion can vote to fire Cooper — because we all know that’s exactly what they’ll do.
District 2 school board candidate Simon Mahan is hoping to unseat first-term incumbent and former Carencro Mayor Tommy Angelle in the Nov. 4 election.
District Attorney Mike Harson is showing his desperation by falsely attributing quotes to his opponent and blocking journalists from his social media.
The governor is traveling the country laying the groundwork for a possible 2016 presidential campaign, but his approval ratings at home hover well below 50 percent.
State District Judge Bob Downing extended the order and delayed a planned Wednesday hearing about a permanent injunction while negotiations continue between Attorney General Buddy Caldwell and the waste disposal site operator.
New Louisiana higher education commissioner Joseph Rallo will be paid more than his predecessor.
Elijah McGuire and Alonzo Harris each had four rushing touchdowns, and Louisiana-Lafayette rolled to 419 yards on the ground in a 55-40 victory over Arkansas State on Tuesday night.
Bill and Hillary Clinton are the validators-in-chief for Democrats struggling through a bleak campaign season in states where President Barack Obama is deeply unpopular.
President Barack Obama is turning to black radio listeners to plead for midterm votes, a targeted approach to drum up Democratic support at a time when many candidates don't want him around in person.
"I am extremely disheartened by the political machines that are attempting to hijack my efforts along with others that advocate for children."
Landrieu, who is fighting to keep her seat for a fourth term, said that Ebola is serious and precautions should be taken, but she accused Republicans of using the virus outbreak in West Africa to "create fear" here at home.
Law enforcement agencies are participating in a "Louisiana Heroin Summit," designed to address the recent rise in heroin use and drug-related deaths around the state.
State education officials are preparing to release performance scores for public schools and public school districts.
Saints coach Sean Payton is starting a new week by emphasizing, repeatedly, the many good things he noticed during New Orleans' latest loss.
We will be offering our recommendations on the constitutional amendments tomorrow.
The justices did not comment in leaving in place lower court rulings that dismissed the lawsuits against BP and other companies involved in the worst U.S. offshore oil spill.
White registration is down by 7,700 voters while black registration has shot up by 7,100 voters.