Oct 13, 2019

Louisiana race: Democratic Gov. John Bel Edwards forced into runoff

John Bel Edwards. Photo: Patrick Dennis-Pool/Getty Images

Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards (D) was forced into a runoff Saturday night after winning 47% of the vote in a tight gubernatorial primary race, results show.

Why it matters: Edwards stood out as a rare Democratic governor in "Deep South Trump territory," AP notes. His failure to win 50% of the vote outright over 5 challengers brings into question his chances of re-election. He's facing an intense national Republican campaign, spearheaded by President Trump, per AP.

The big picture: Trump rallied against Edwards in Louisiana on the eve of the election, calling on voters to cast their ballots for one of two major Republican candidates, without naming either of them.

  • Results show Edwards' closest rivals, Republican businessman Eddie Rispone (R) gained 27% of votes and U.S. Rep. Ralph Abraham (R) won 24%, KPLC first reported. That means Rispone will face off against Edwards in the Nov. 16 runoff.

What he's saying: Edwards may have won the most votes, but Trump posted 2 victorious tweets after news of the Louisiana election outcome emerged.

Editor's note: This article has been updated with new details throughout.

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Trump leaps into Louisiana governor's race

John Bel Edwards (L); Eddie Rispone. Photos: Mark Wallheiser/Getty Images (L); Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images

Next weekend's Louisiana governor's race is "too close to call," according to the state's top daily paper. President Trump hopes he can use his popularity in Louisiana to push the politically inexperienced Republican challenger across the line.

Why it matters: Incumbent Gov. John Bel Edwards "is attempting to defy the laws of political gravity for the second time and remain as the only Democratic governor in the Deep South, and the only Democrat in Louisiana to hold statewide office," per The Advocate.

Go deeperArrowNov 10, 2019

Trump rallies for governor hopeful and rails against Warren in Louisiana

President Trump gestures at his rally in Monroe, La., on Wednesday. Photo: Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images

President Trump urged voters at a rally in Monroe, Louisiana, Wednesday night to back businessman Eddie Rispone's bid to unseat the state's Gov. John Bel Edwards (D), whom he labeled a "radical, liberal," ahead of the Nov. 16 runoff.

Go deeperArrowNov 7, 2019

GOP Gov. Matt Bevin calls for review of votes after tight Kentucky race

Bevin before a Lexington, Kentucky rally on Nov. 4, 2019. Photo: Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images

Republican Gov. Matt Bevin formally requested a recanvass of votes for the state's gubernatorial race on Wednesday, after tailing behind Democratic opponent Andy Beshear by just above 5,000 votes, AP reports.

The big picture: A Democratic win from Beshear would suggest that the impeachment inquiry into Trump is not the useful 2020 strategy Republicans assumed it would be, even in Trump-friendly states.

Go deeperArrowNov 7, 2019