After months of preparation, the 2019 election campaign officially begins in earnest this week with the official filing of candidacies.
In some cases, candidates have already been running for a long time. The Louisiana governor’s race is a good example. Incumbent Gov. John Bel Edwards, a Democrat, made it known a long time ago that he would be seeking a second term in October’s election. His two main opponents, Ralph Abraham and Eddie Rispone, both Republicans, have been campaigning full-blast since at least the first of the year.
And the same thing is true of other statewide and local races. Filing takes place this week from Tuesday through Thursday. Parish candidates will file at the Clerk of Court’s office in the courthouse at Franklinton. State level candidates will file with the Louisiana Secretary of State’s office in Baton Rouge.
In addition to the election for governor, all of the state’s constitutional office are up for election, including Lieutenant Governor, Secretary of State, Attorney General, State Treasurer, Insurance Commissioner, and Agriculture and Forestry Commissioner. All members of the Louisiana Board of Elementary and Secondary Education are also up for election. State Representatives and State Senators will also be voted on. In addition, one justice for the State Supreme Court will be elected to fill a vacancy.
In Washington Parish, offices up for election include: Parish President, Sheriff, Clerk of Court, and Assessor. All members of the Parish Council are up for election. Voters in Washington and St. Tammany Parish will also elect a district judge to replace the retiring Judge Martin Coady, who has been on the bench since 1990.
The election will be October 12, with any run-offs to take place on November 16.
Three proposed constitutional amendments will be on the ballot for October 12.
The deadline to register to vote in person or by mail is September 11, and the deadline to register on-line is September 28. Early voting for the October 12 election will be conducted every day from September 28 through October 5, except for Sunday. An actual sample ballot showing all candidates and summaries of all three constitutional amendments will appear in The Era-Leader before the October 12 election.
Here are the candidates who have filed in contested elections as of Thursday afternoon for local offices only.
Unopposed in Washington Parish and automatically elected to new 4-year terms are Clerk of Court Johnny D. Crain Jr., Democrat; Assessor Jimbo Stevenson, Democrat; and District 5 Parish Councilman Rusty Fornea, Republican.
Opposed parish races include:
State Senate, District 12 - Sen. Beth Mizell (R) vs Darrell Fairburn (D)
State Representative - Dist 75 Rep. Malinda White (D vs) Phillipp Bedwell (R)
Sheriff - Sheriff Randy Seal (D) vs Olander Smith (D) vs Demille Topps (D)
Parish President - Parish President Richard N. Thomas (D) vs Ryan Seal (R)
Parish Council District 2 - Shawn Rice (R) vs Kendall Amacker (R) (Incumbent Mike Fussell isn't running again.)
Parish Council District 3 - Reginald McMasters, Incumbent (D) vs Shane Smith (I)
Parish Council District 4 - Levi Lewis, Incumbent (D) vs Gloria Kates (D) vs Clark Harry (D)
Parish Council District 7 David Anthony, Incumbent (I) Carley King (R)