Sunday, May 26, 2024

Louisiana expects 45% turnout for congressional races

by BIZ Magazine

By Wes Muller, Louisiana Illuminator

Louisiana’s open congressional primary election is Tuesday alongside a number of down-ballot local races and eight proposed constitutional amendments. 

Many voters will be casting their ballots at new polling locations. As of Monday, the Louisiana Secretary of State’s Office reported polling location changes in 36 parishes. St. Landry Parish has the most with 31, followed by Iberia Parish with 27 and St. Martin Parish with 26. 

Most of the changes resulted from the Louisiana Legislature’s redistricting efforts, though parish officials are responsible for determining polling locations, Secretary of State spokesman John Tobler said. 

Pollster John Couvillon, owner of JMC Analytics & Polling, said he expects to see 45% to 47% statewide turnout, which equates to about 1.4 million voters. 

Every voter in the state will have at least a U.S. Senate seat and eight proposed amendments to the Louisiana Constitution on the ballot. Most voters, except for those in the 4th Congressional District, where Rep. Mike Johnson is unopposed, will also have a U.S. House of Representatives seat on the ballot.

Couvillon said his polling shows each of the congressional incumbents will hold their seats. 

There are also two state legislative races: in Senate District 5, which includes areas in Orleans and Jefferson parishes; and Senate District 17, which includes portions of Assumption, East Baton Rouge, East Feliciana, Iberville, Pointe Coupee, St. Helena, St. Martin, West Baton Rouge and West Feliciana.

State Reps. Royce Duplessis and Mandie Landry, both New Orleans Democrats, are vying to fill the District 5 seat, formerly held by Karen Carter Peterson. Couvillon said Duplessis is favored to win. 

The District 17 race could be settled with a December runoff, Couvillon said. State Rep. Jeremy LaCombe, a Livonia Democrat, West Baton Rouge Parish Councilman Caleb Kleinpeter and physician Kirk Rousset, both Republicans, are competing for the seat formerly held by Republican Rick Ward III. 

The proposed amendments to the Louisiana Constitution involve issues such as taxation, ethics and slavery, among others. Additionally, a number of parishes will have local races and propositions on the ballot. 

Polls open at 6 a.m. and close at 8 p.m. It is also the last day election officials will accept military and overseas ballots. Other absentee voters had until 4:30 p.m. Monday to return their ballots.

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