Kennedy to announce today if he's running for governor

December 03, 2018 - 6:26 am
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US Senator John Kennedy is expected to announce his decision today on whether he’ll run for Louisiana governor in 2019. 

Baton Rouge Republican businessman Eddie Rispone is currently the only announced challenger to Democratic Governor John Bel Edwards. LaPolitics.com publisher Jeremy Alford expects Kennedy to jump in.

“Kennedy has outside super PAC money lined up, and pulled the trigger on his media consultant. It certainly seems like he’s lined up to make an announcement,” said Alford.

Republican Congressman Ralph Abraham says he’s also leaning towards a run and will announce his decision by the end of the year.

If Kennedy jumps in, he’ll wade into a campaign that analysts predict will shatter previous fundraising records for previous gubernatorial races in Louisiana. Alford says campaign spending should easily top 20-million dollars.

“Rispone has already put up five million of his own money, Kennedy has three million in federal money, and Republicans expect the Governor to have ten million by the time he enters the election cycle.”

And if Kennedy is a participant, Alford says you’ll get a clear ideological divide between him and the governor on key issues that will shape the state’s future, a divide that’s played out publicly since Edwards took office.

“There’s some very different sets of opinions on everything from criminal justice reform to fiscal policy, and we’re getting a preview of that right now.”

Kennedy is less than two years into his six year Senate term.

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