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Presidential candidate U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders makes stop in Baton Rouge; Racism, 'rigged' economy among topics he spoke about

Advocate staff photo by HILARY SCHEINUK -- US Sen. Bernie Sanders, No Party-Vermont, speaks at the Southern Christian Leadership Conference's Presidential Gala, Saturday, July 25, 2015, at the Hilton Capitol Center in Baton Rouge, La.

U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders brought his fiery, long shot bid for the presidency to Baton Rouge on Saturday night, blasting what he called entrenched racism, income inequality and a “rigged” economy that penalizes the middle class. “This country has more crises probably than at any time since the Great Depression,” he said during a 35-minute speech.… Continue reading →

Judge: State should pay $137M more to local school districts

Louisiana owes local public schools $137 million because state lawmakers didn’t properly pass previous school funding formulas, a state district judge ruled Monday. The St. John the Baptist Parish School Board filed a lawsuit claiming the Legislature didn’t meet passage requirements for the formula used in the 2013-14 budget year. Thirty other local school boards, nearly half… Continue reading →

David Vitter has strong showing, raises $1M-plus in governor's race funds in latest quarter

U.S. Sen. David Vitter continues his strong fundraising in the Louisiana governor’s race. The Republican candidate for governor said Monday he raised more than $1.3 million in the most recent fundraising quarter ending July 16. Vitter’s campaign says it closed the period with $5 million in the bank for the Oct. 24 election. A political action… Continue reading →

Candidates for governor support more limits on tax giveaways

Advocate Photo by VERONICA DOMINACH-- From left John Bel Edwards, Jay Dardenne, and Scott Angelle during the Louisiana gubernatorial candidate forum at the Alario Center in Westwego on Wednesday, June 18, 2015.

The political pendulum swung against continued tax giveaways during the just-concluded legislative session, and that swing will continue next year, each of the four gubernatorial candidates promised Wednesday in Westwego. Public Service Commissioner Scott Angelle, Lt. Gov. Jay Dardenne, U.S. Sen. David Vitter and state Rep. John Bel Edwards — the sole Democrat — all said they… Continue reading →

Location, ticket details revealed for Bobby Jindal's big announcement in June

. Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal’s big announcement will take place at the Pontchartrain Center in Kenner on June 24. Jindal, 43, announced last week that he would announce whether he will seek the GOP’s 2016 presidential nomination on that date but provided few details. Today, Jindal’s top political adviser Timmy Teepell emailed a “special invitation” to family and friends… Continue reading →

Gumbo PAC forms to target Sen. David Vitter's governor bid, releases video referencing reported ties to DC madam, New Orleans prostitute

Advocate staff photo by TRAVIS SPRADLING -- U.S. Senator David Vitter

A new political action committee called Gumbo PAC has launched with the expressed purpose of targeting U.S. Sen. David Vitter’s bid to become the next governor of Louisiana. Gumbo PAC launched a website and YouTube video today that takes aim at Vitter’s time in elected office. He was first elected to Congress in 1999 and… Continue reading →

'The big thing that stands out' so far among the four major candidates running for Louisiana governor

Advocate staff file photo by BILL FEIG -- Louisiana gubernatorial candidates. From left, John Bel Edwards, David Vitter, Jay Dardenne and Scott Angelle.

The four major candidates for governor spent the past week in different ways. U.S. Sen. David Vitter hosted embattled but popular New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie at a brewery in Baton Rouge. Lt. Gov. Jay Dardenne traveled the state with an elaborate Mardi Gras “mascot” in a van decorated to highlight the successes of… Continue reading →

U.S. Senator David Vitter: N.J. Governor Chris Christie a 'mentor, no-nonsense leader'

Advocate staff photo by PATRICK DENNIS -- New Jersey Governor Chris Christie speaks in support of Louisiana gubernatorial candidate U.S. Senator David Vitter at a rally at Tin Roof Brewery Tuesday.

U.S. Sen. David Vitter, a Republican running to become the next governor of Louisiana, said he sees New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie as “a mentor,” despite any cloud of controversy that might hang over Christie in the wake of a bridge closure scandal in New Jersey. “He is a strong, no-nonsense leader,” Vitter said, appearing alongside Christie… Continue reading →

David Vitter, Scott Angelle praises oil, gas industry at Baton Rouge event

Two of the four major candidates for governor spoke at an oil and gas industry event in Baton Rouge on Monday. U.S. Sen. David Vitter and Public Service Commissioner Scott Angelle, both Republicans, took turns praising the industry, which is the state’s largest employer. “Things are changing fast and Louisiana is trying to adapt to those… Continue reading →

Bobby Jindal: Louisiana won’t take steps to preserve health-insurance subsidies if U.S. Supreme Court strikes down 'Obamacare'

Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal speaks at the Iowa Faith & Freedom 15th Annual Spring Kick Off, in Waukee, Iowa, Saturday, April 25, 2015. (AP Photo/Nati Harnik)

If the U.S. Supreme Court strikes down health insurance subsidies when it rules this summer on a legal challenge to the Affordable Care Act, Louisiana will not take steps to preserve the subsidies for the more than 150,000 state residents now relying on them for coverage, Gov. Bobby Jindal said Thursday. That… Continue reading →

Gubernatorial candidates report millions in the bank with 6 months until Election Day

Advocate staff file photo by BILL FEIG -- Gubernatorial candidates. From left at table, John Bel Edwards, David Vitter, Jay Dardenne and Scott Angelle.

The race to replace Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal is shaping up to be one of the most expensive competitive gubernatorial campaigns in the state’s history. Based on campaign finance reports filed this week, Republican U.S. Sen. David Vitter is leading the pack, having raised $1.14 million since the beginning of the 2015. Vitter’s campaign has… Continue reading →

Mitch Landrieu says commitment to New Orleans will keep him out of governor's race

Advocate staff file photo by ELIOT KAMENITZ -- New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu

After criticizing the Jindal administration’s approach to balancing the state’s budget, New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu said emphatically Monday that he will not run for governor in 2015. “We have made tremendous progress that was admirable of the city, but we have a very long way to go, and because of that I don’t intend to… Continue reading →

La. lieutenant governor candidates promote culture

Two candidates for Louisiana’s next lieutenant governor said Wednesday that private partnerships are key to efforts to promote the state’s cultural enterprise. With dire state budget circumstances, it’s more important now than ever to tap into the resources businesses and private individuals can bring to the table, they told a forum crowd. “Approach those corporate doors… Continue reading →

Photos from Iowa event Thursday where report says Bobby Jindal draws louder applause than Rick Perry, Mike Huckabee, Rick Santorum

U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, talks with Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal, right, during the Homeschool Iowa's Capitol Day, Thursday, April 9, 2015, in Des Moines, Iowa. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)

. Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal garnered the biggest round of applause at an Iowa event Thursday featuring high-profile presidential hopefuls, according to the Des Moines Register. At the Family Leader's regional summit in Mount Pleasant, Iowa, it was Jindal who drew high praise from attendees among others such as Texas Gov. Rick Perry, ex-Arkansas… Continue reading →

Treasurer John Kennedy running for re-election, not governor

Advocate Staff Photo by ARTHUR D. LAUCK -- State Treasurer John Kennedy in 2011.

After weeks of speculation, state Treasurer John N. Kennedy has made it official: He’s seeking a fifth term in the same office. A Republican, Kennedy’s name frequently has come up as a possible candidate for attorney general — or even governor (or U.S. senator should David Vitter be elected governor this year). Earlier this year, Kennedy was… Continue reading →

Bobby Jindal: 'Duck Dynasty' star Willie Robertson 'would be a great running mate'

Governor Bobby Jindal appears in an episode of "Duck Dynasty." Courtesy of A&E.

Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal says Duck Dynasty star Willie Robertson wouldn’t make a bad running-mate — as long as Robertson is willing to serve as second-in-command... Continue reading →

Darrell Ourso wins Louisiana House seat for southeast East Baton Rouge

Advocate staff photo by PATRICK DENNIS --  Metro Councilman Buddy Amoroso, left, speaks as fellow councilman Joel Boe, right, listens, during discussion about attorney Mary Olive Pierson in the Metro Council meeting in January.

Former Baton Rouge Metro Councilman Darrell Ourso won by 72 votes a special runoff election to represent southeast Baton Rouge neighborhoods in the Louisiana Legislature. With all 29 precincts reporting Saturday night, Ourso had 1,958 votes, or 50.9 percent of the total cast, to Metro Councilman Buddy Amoroso’s 1,886 ballots. Secretary of State Tom Schedler expected… Continue reading →

Democrats back John Bel Edwards as candidate for governor

Advocate Photo by MARK BALLARD -- State Rep. John Bel Edwards, of Amite, while the leaders of the Louisiana Democratic Party vote Saturday to nominate him as their sole candidate for governor in October election.

Hoping to avoid a crowded gubernatorial race that would dilute their strength, leaders of the Louisiana Democratic Party on Saturday endorsed state Rep. John Bel Edwards, of Amite, as their candidate for governor. The Democratic State Central Committee opened nominations, accepted Edwards’ bid and then quickly closed nominations to applause. Edwards, 48, gave a… Continue reading →

Amoroso and Ourso square off in Saturday runoff for House District 66

On paper, both of the candidates in Saturday’s runoff to represent southeast Baton Rouge in the Louisiana Legislature look similar: conservative Republicans with experience on the Metro Council. Though they come from the same philosophical place, they represent opposing factions: one unyielding and the other, practical. East Baton Rouge Metro Councilman Buddy Amoroso says… Continue reading →

Bobby Jindal adviser: Governor will wait until June to announce whether he'll run for president

Advocate staff photo by BILL FEIG -- Surrounded by supporters of the legislation, Gov. Bobby Jindal answers a question after announcing the latest plan to get Common Core out of Louisiana.

Gov. Bobby Jindal will wait until the state legislative session ends in June before announcing whether he'll enter the 2016 presidential race. The Republican governor's chief political adviser, Timmy Teepell, said Monday that Jindal wants to stay focused on the final session of his term before deciding about the White House bid. The legislative session begins April 13. Lawmakers must wrap up… Continue reading →

Buddy Amoroso, Darrell Ourso to meet in runoff to represent southeast Baton Rouge in Louisiana House

A current member and former member of the Baton Rouge Metro Council will face each other in a runoff election to decide who will represent southeast Baton Rouge in the state House of Representatives. With all 4,243 votes counted in Saturday’s low-turnout special election, Buddy Amoroso received 1,512 votes or 35.6 percent of the total… Continue reading →

State representative candidates for Saturday's election

Darrell Ourso, a Republican running for the House District 66 seat in southeast Baton Rouge.

Anthony “Buddy” Amoroso Republican Married to Denise Waters Amoroso, a teacher, and has three grown children Lives in Lake Sherwood Acres (Off Sherwood Forest Blvd near Coursey) for the past 13 years Age: 57 Education: Broadmoor High School, Oral Roberts University Occupation: Property Manager Business: Prime Properties Church: Christ Presbyterian Church Previous political experience: Baton… Continue reading →

Baton Rouge voters to pick new state representative in Saturday election

Voters in the predominantly Republican southeast Baton Rouge are being asked Saturday to select a new state representative among four candidates. The polls open at 7 a.m. for the Saturday election and close at 8 p.m. for 29 precincts along Bayou Manchac from the Amite River to Gardere. Four candidates are vying… Continue reading →

Politics blog: U.S. Sen. Bill Cassidy endorses U.S. David Vitter in Louisiana governor's race

U.S. Sen. Bill Cassidy said he’s backing his fellow senator and Republican David Vitter in the Louisiana governor’s race. During a question and answer session with the audience following his luncheon speech Wednesday to the Greater Baton Rouge Association of Relators Commercial and Investment Division, Cassidy was asked who he was supporting in the governor’s race. “I’ll be supporting Vitter,”… Continue reading →

Politics blog: Jefferson Parish President John Young reveals hefty warchest in advance of Louisiana lieutenant governor’s race.

Jefferson Parish President John Young’s reporting $1.8 million in his campaign warchest for this fall’s lieutenant governor’s race. Young’s campaign finance report reveals that he transferred $1.49 million from his Jefferson Parish president election’s account. He raised another $451,000 in cash contributions during 2014 for his lieutenant governor’s office bid. Campaign expenses ran $141,771 in 2014, according to the report filed… Continue reading →

Louisiana Lt. Gov Jay Dardenne reports $2M-plus raised for governor's race; see how that compares to David Vitter, Scott Angelle

Lt. Gov. Jay Dardenne reported $1.5 million in cash on hand for his governor’s race bid this fall. Dardenne late Friday became the first announced governor’s candidate to file the required annual report with the state ethics agency. Dardenne’s filing showed cash contributions of $635,530 and in-kind contributions of $39,665 during 2014. His campaign spent $326,051 during the year. According to… Continue reading →

Gov. Bobby Jindal organizing national fundraising

Advocate staff file photo by HILARY SCHEINUK -- La. Gov. Bobby Jindal.

— Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal sometimes likes to wear cowboy boots, but that’s not the reason he’s well equipped to operate in what one watchdog group calls the Wild West of campaign financing heading into the 2016 presidential election. If, as many expect, Jindal decides to make a run for the White House, he… Continue reading →

Republican candidates for open House seat participate in GOP forum

Advocate Photo by MARK BALLARD -- Republican candidates in the special election for the Louisiana House District 66 seat spoke at a forum Tuesday. From left to right are candidates Darrell Ourso, Rick Bond and Buddy Amoroso. The special election to fill the seat representing southeast East Baton Rouge Parish in the Louisiana Legislature is Feb. 21.

Speaking to a Republican audience, the three GOP candidates for a southeast Baton Rouge seat in the Louisiana House generally supported Common Core at a Tuesday forum. The winner of the Feb. 21 special election will walk into one of the most divisive issues in years and be expected to vote on whether or not to scrap… Continue reading →

Analysis: Sen. Mary Landrieu now a relic of disappearing group in South -- the white, moderate Democrat in elected office

Sen. Mary Landrieu, D-La., hugs Orleans Parish Poll Commissioner Janice Nigholson, left, as she arrives to vote in her runoff election against Rep. Bill Cassidy, R-La., in New Orleans, Saturday, Dec. 6, 2014. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)

If the outcome of the U.S. Senate race was determined by most hours and hardest work put into the campaign trail, Mary Landrieu would have won by a landslide. But that was never the point in Louisiana's runoff election. Landrieu, a third-term Democrat, traveled the state tirelessly before the runoff a week ago, talking herself hoarse in pursuit of… Continue reading →

Mayor-President Kip Holden announces run for Louisiana lieutenant governor, touts Baton Rouge turnaround

Advocate staff photo by BILL FEIG -- Mayor-President Kip Holden, right, greets former BRPD chief Jeff LeDuff, left, as wife Lois Holden, center, watches, prior to Kip announcing he's running for Lt. Governor.

East Baton Rouge Parish Mayor-President Kip Holden became the fourth candidate to enter the 2015 lieutenant governor’s race. Holden touted Wednesday his record as the chief executive of Louisiana’s capital city for the past decade. He talked about the economic turnaround in Baton Rouge as well as the expansion of arts, entertainment and cultural forums that have… Continue reading →

If David Vitter is elected governor in 2015, a U.S. representative from Louisiana is anxious to make a run for open Senate seat

Associated Press file photo -- U.S. Rep. John Fleming, R-La.

A U.S. representative for Louisiana said he's ready to replace David Vitter if the U.S. Senator is elected governor next year. Rep. John Fleming, a republican representing the fourth congressional district in the northwest part of the state, is "very interested" is running for Vitter's potential slot in 2016, according to a report.… Continue reading →

What's next for Mary Landrieu? Report: Senator a 'hot commodity' among headhunters, lobbyists, consultants

Sen. Mary Landrieu, D-La., speaks to supporters as she concedes defeat in her Senate runoff election against Rep. Bill Cassidy, R-La., in New Orleans, Saturday, Dec. 6, 2014. Left is her husband Frank Snellings. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)

One door will soon close for U.S. Sen. Mary Landrieu, but it sounds like another will quickly open for her. As an outgoing senior member of Congress, Landrieu is a "hot commodity" among lobbying and consulting groups, according to a Politico report. “I think K Street would welcome [Landrieu] with open arms,” Ivan Adler,… Continue reading →

U.S. Rep. Bill Cassidy returns to Washington Tuesday, has 1 main priority in mind for transition to Senate

Louisiana senate candidate, Bill Cassidy, takes a call while going to meet supporters at his election watch party in Baton Rouge, La., Saturday, Dec. 6, 2014. (AP Photo/Bill Feig)

BATON ROUGE, La. -- Republican U.S. Rep. Bill Cassidy returns to Washington on Tuesday, to begin preparations for his transition to the Senate, after his decisive weekend victory over Democratic incumbent Mary Landrieu. In addition to the many orientation tasks, Cassidy also has a meeting scheduled with incoming Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, where he expects talk of committee… Continue reading →