2015 Governor's Race

Marsanne Golsby

WRKF’s gubernatorial forum Friday night did not go as planned. Three of the four candidates cancelled on us.

“I want to thank David and Scott and John Bel for not showing up tonight,” Lt. Governor Jay Dardenne quipped. “I don’t think one of them was ever intending to come. The other two have been very faithful at coming to a lot of these, and I have no idea why they didn’t show up.”

Dardenne flew solo, bravely answering dozens of questions posed by the sold-out crowd in attendance.

S. Lincoln

“We got new terms. Now we’ve got like ‘Super-PACs’, right?” NAACP attorney Alfreda Bester told Leaders With Vision during their informational luncheon on campaign finance last week.

But what are Super-PACs? Technically, under Louisiana law, they don’t exist.

“State law just calls everything a ‘political committee’,” Louisiana Board of Ethics administrator Kathleen Allen explained. “If you’ve got two or more persons supporting or opposing candidates, they’re just called a political committee.”

courtesy Louisiana Architects Association

A gubernatorial forum on coastal issues, put on by the Coalition to Restore Coastal Louisiana, was held Tuesday evening at Nicholls State University. It had all four of the major candidates in agreement on the importance of working to avert Louisiana’s land loss.


A new report from the Louisiana Legislative Auditor says revenue coming into the state’s Transportation Trust Fund is not keeping pace with the state’s highway needs.

The report, compiled for informational purposes at the request of the Legislature, states, “With a significant rise in the costs of construction, a decline in federal funds, and only modest growth in state funding, there is concern that the TTF may not be able to address the transportation infrastructure needs of the state.”

Sue Lincoln

Saturday’s forum for the four leading gubernatorial candidates included the expected campaign catch phrases, like Lt. Governor Jay Dardenne’s “Effective leadership has proven results” and Sen. David Vitter’s “It’s all in the plan at davidvitter.com.”

Put on by the Louisiana State Troopers Association, the forum also included a lot of love for law and order, with state Rep. John Bel Edwards assuring State Police,“Public safety is a priority,” and Public Service Commissioner Scott Angelle saying, “Louisiana cannot be great if we’re not first safe.”


Sue Lincoln

A hotel ballroom in Baton Rouge was filled to capacity Thursday, as AARP hosted a forum for the gubernatorial candidates Thursday. Three of the four leading contenders showed up.

“I want to thank Scott and Jay for being here today. You know, showing up counts,” John Bel Edwards quipped, prompting appreciative laughter.

David Vitter, who was holding a hearing in Washington, D.C., did not attend, so he took a bit of ribbing.

Sue Lincoln

While the candidates for governor are obviously running against each other, they are also running hard against Bobby Jindal and his record. Speaking to the Louisiana Municipal Association on Friday, all four of the top contenders in the governor’s race endeavored to draw a line of difference between themselves and the current governor.


Sue Lincoln

What’s it like out on the campaign trail? Over the next couple of months, I’ll be checking that out with candidates for governor. First up is Democrat John Bel Edwards. I caught up with him just past the midpoint of last week’s statewide tour, and traveled with his caravan around DeRidder and up to Leesville.

Unlike David Vitter, Jay Dardenne and Scott Angelle -- who have held statewide posts – it’s a constant round of introductions.

“Lettin’ us know who you are?” asked a barber in DeRidder.

“I’m known more than you might think,” Edwards replied, “But I’ve got the most room to grow.”

Just as the summer days are heating up, so is the governor’s race. Some of the candidates are actively wooing the women’s vote.

“I don’t view women as a special interest. I view ‘em as Louisiana’s interest, with an absolutely deserving right to sit at every table, with equal pay for equal work,” Republican Scott Angelle says in one of his ads.

“Scott Angelle’s trying desperately to be in the runoff with Vitter at this point, and he’s appealing to women,” U-L Lafayette political science professor Pearson Cross observes.

Sue Lincoln

The $1.6-billion state budget deficit is going to be a major factor in the in the gubernatorial election this fall. All four announced candidates for governor appeared at a forum earlier this month, and offered their ideas on how to deal with the shortfall.

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