Louisiana to have party primaries for senatorial race

December 05, 2007 at 12:28 pm  | Mobile Reader | Pring this storyPrint 

This is the last year for open primaries in national elections for federal officials in Louisiana. Next year, party primaries will determine the candidates for the general elections.

That could make a difference in the upcoming election for Senator. State Treasurer John Kennedy, a Republican, has announced he will oppose incumbent Mary Landrieu, a Democrat, for the post.

The new setup means they will not oppose each other in an open primary. Kennedy will run against other Republicans seeking the nomination and Landrieu will oppose other Democrats. And then the winners of the primaries will oppose each other in the general election.

That could work in Landrieu’s favor since there are more registered Democrats than Republicans in Louisiana. They will have to vote for a Democrat in the primary and may carry over their choice to the general election But, on the other hand, this state probably has more Democrats voting Republican than any other state.

All statewide officials in Louisiana are Republican except one - - Lt. Gov. Mitch Landrieu, Mary’s brother. And the state legislature moved much closer to Republican majorities in this year’s election.

In the past, many Louisianians did not vote for members of their party in the primaries. That is because, in the open primaries, Republicans opposed Republicans and Democrats opposed Democrats and they could vote for whomever they pleased.

With party primaries taking over in the national elections next year, this is likely to change. And because of it, you can expect the Republican Party to put up a big push to sign up Democrats who usually support Republican candidates.

At any rate, next year’s Senatorial race looms large. Also considering running is Secretary of State Jay Dardene, a very popular Republican. It is not likely that a major Democrat will oppose the incumbent.

So look forward to the possibility of a lively Republican primary and a very lively general election.

View other articles written Allen Lottinger

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