state legislature

State Legislature Sees Little Turnover

Nov 2, 2015

By the time you cast your ballot in the October 24th election, many of the legislative races were already decided.

Sixty-nine of the 144 members of the legislature ran without contest, and didn't even appear on the ballot. Of those, only two were not incumbents. Even though 19 legislative races remain to be decided in a runoff election, that won't make much of a dent.


Friday is the deadline for pre-filing bills for the Louisiana legislative session that starts March 10. So far, the proposals include renewed attempts at state retirement reform, constitutional amendments to expand Medicaid, and the return of the electric chair.


Republicans have reason to be wary of their newfound power in the state Senate, having recently gained a two-thirds supermajority. Some political analysts say too much power can backfire.


State Sen. Rick Ward is dropping out of the race for Louisiana's Sixth Congressional District. According to The Times-Picayune, Ward's changed his mind because the position would require too much time away from his children. This decision comes three weeks after announcing his candidacy, and a month after switching to the Republican party in mid-July.

Many accused Ward of switching parties because he wanted to run for the higher seat. Ward said he switched because the "R" behind his name would better represent his views.

On Saturday, gubernatorial candidate Rep. John Bel Edwards delivered what The Times-Picayune called an animated speech at a Democratic rally, aiming to distance himself from Republican Governor Jindal's practices. Edwards doesn't have to try hard: he's opposed nearly every one, if not all, of the Governor's initiatives since they both assumed office in 2008.

Edwards is a leader of the minority party. Republicans have two-thirds supermajority control over the Senate (thanks to a few recent aisle-jumpers), a majority in the House, and every statewide office other than US Sen. Mary Landrieu's seat. 


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