Louisiana State Senate elections, 2011

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Louisiana State Senate elections, 2011

Majority controlCampaign contributions

Competitiveness Analysis
Candidates unopposed by a major partyPrimary challengesRetiring incumbents

RedistrictingQualifications

List of candidates
District 1District 2District 3District 4District 5District 6District 7District 8District 9District 10District 11District 12District 13District 14District 15District 16District 17District 18District 19District 20District 21District 22District 23District 24District 25District 26District 27District 28District 29District 30District 31District 32District 33District 34District 35District 36District 37District 38District 39
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Louisiana State Senate

Elections for the office of Louisiana State Senator were held on November 19, 2011. Each of the state's 39 senators were up for election. Members are elected to four-year terms.

The 2011 election will be the state's first election under its new legislative maps. Following the 2010 census, the state redrew its legislative boundaries to account for growth and shifts in the state's population. The Louisiana State Legislature was responsible for the redistricting process. Louisiana's 39 senate seats are comprised of 39 single-member legislative districts.

Louisiana is just one of four states that held state senate elections in 2011. The other three states that hold their state senate elections in odd-numbered years are New Jersey, Mississippi and Virginia. Louisiana is the only state to hold its 2011 legislative elections on a Saturday.

Candidates wishing to run for the Louisiana State Senate were required to file their nominating signatures or candidate filing fees between September 6 and September 8. The state primary election took place on Saturday, October 22, 2011. As they become available, candidate information and election results will be reflected on this page.

See also: Louisiana House of Representatives elections, 2011

General election results

The following candidates won election on October 22, 2011 and November 19, 2011:

  1. A.G. Crowe
  2. Barrow Peacock
  3. Ben Nevers
  4. Conrad Appel
  5. Dale Erdey
  6. Dan Claitor
  7. Dan Morrish
  8. Daniel Martiny
  9. David Heitmeier
  10. Edwin Murray
  11. Eric LaFleur
  12. Francis Thompson
  13. Fred Mills, Jr.
  14. Gary Smith, Jr.
  15. Gerald Long
  16. Gregory Tarver
  17. Jack Donahue (Louisiana)
  18. Jean-Paul J. Morrell
  19. Jody Amedee
  20. John Alario
  21. John R. Smith (Louisiana)
  22. Jonathan Perry
  23. Karen Peterson
  24. Mack White, Jr.
  25. Mike Walsworth
  26. Neil Riser
  27. Norby Chabert
  28. Patrick Cortez
  29. R.L. Allain II
  30. Richard Gallot, Jr.
  31. Robert Adley
  32. Robert Kostelka
  33. Ronnie Johns
  34. Sharon Weston Broome
  35. Sherri Smith Buffington
  36. Troy Brown
  37. Yvonne Dorsey-Colomb

Term limits

See also State legislatures with term limits and Impact of term limits on state legislative elections in 2011

Of the 15 states, it is the only state where term limits were imposed by the state's legislators, rather than through the ballot initiative process. Under Louisiana's term limits, state senators can serve no more than three 4-year terms in the senate.

There are 39 Louisiana State Senators. In 2011, 6 of them who are current members, or 15.4% of the total senate seats, will be ineligible to run for the senate again. Of them, 5 are Democratic state senators and 1 is a Republican.

In addition to the 6 state senators who are leaving office because of term limits, 10 state representatives are also termed-out.

The 6 current members of the state senate who will be ineligible to run in November are:

Democrats (5):

Republicans (1):

Why odd-year elections?

Clerk of the Louisiana House Alfred "Butch Speer explains why the state holds odd-year elections:

For scores of years we conducted our party primaries in the winter of the odd numbered years, with any necessary 2d primary held in January. Because Republican voter registration was so miniscule from 1877 until 1980, the general elections were mere irritants to the Democrat primary victor. Once we scrapped the partisan primary system [1975] we set the entire system up to run in the fall of the odd numbered year, our traditional election season.[1]

Impact of redistricting

See also: Redistricting in Louisiana

Every 10 years, the Constitution requires states to redraw Congressional and state legislative districts based on updated Census information. In 2011, Louisiana was the second state to complete its state legislative redistricting. Its 39 senate and 105 house districts were re-drawn by the Legislature and approved by Governor Bobby Jindal.

During the redistricting process, Louisiana legislators faced a compressed timeline compared to other states. The odd year elections meant that the 2011 elections in the fall would need districts soon enough to get clearance from the Department of Justice per the Voting Rights Act, allow candidates to file in the appropriate districts, and leave time for the Blanket primary and the general election to happen in early November 2011.

The State Senate added two new majority-minority district for the 2011 elections, but took away seats from the New Orleans area overall, reflecting the loss of population in the wake of Hurricane Katrina. The new Senate map has 11 majority-minority districts.

Majority control

See also: Partisan composition of state senates

Going into the November 2011 elections, the Republican Party was the majority party in 29 state senates, including Louisiana. One chamber (Nebraska) is officially nonpartisan and in one chamber (Alaska), several Republicans vote with a caucus other than the Republican caucus. In 19 states, the Democratic Party held the majority party.

In the other 3 states with state senate elections in 2011 (Mississippi, New Jersey and Virginia), the Democratic Party held the majority party in Virginia and New Jersey, while the Republican Party held the majority party in the Mississippi State Senate.

The current partisan composition of the Louisiana State Senate before and after the election:

Louisiana State Senate
Party As of November 2011 After the 2011 Election
     Democratic Party 17 15
     Republican Party 22 24
Total 39 39

Competitiveness

Incumbents unopposed by a major party

2011 state legislative elections analyzed using a Competitiveness Index

Eighteen incumbents (46.2%) face no competition in the November 8 general election and are thus, barring unforeseen circumstances, guaranteed re-election in November.

  • 5 Democratic incumbents face no November challenger.
  • 13 Republican incumbent face no November challenger

2 challengers (one Democrat and one Republican) face no competition in the November 8 general election and are thus, barring unforeseen circumstances, guaranteed re-election in November.

Primary challenges

Six incumbents faced competition in the October 22 primary.

The following 6 incumbents faced primary opposition:

Retiring incumbents

Nine incumbent senators did not run for re-election, while 30 (76.9%) ran for re-election. Of the 9 incumbents who did not run for re-election, 6 are Democrats and 3 are Republicans. Furthermore, 6 of the retiring incumbents are ineligible to run for re-election due to term limits and 1 was displaced by redistricting.

Incumbents who are retiring are:

Incumbents displaced by redistricting

One incumbent senator was displaced by the 2011 redistricting process. District 2 Democratic senator Cynthia Willard-Lewis was displaced and is now running for election in district 3.

Qualifications

In order to qualify to run for the State Senate, a candidate must:

  • Must be 18 years of age or older[2].
  • Must be a resident of the district they seek to hold office to for a minimum of two years[2].
  • Must not have served more than two and one half terms previously in office. This is for any candidate who has held office in the past after January 8, 1996[3].
  • Have not been convicted of a felony offense[3].
  • Have no outstanding fines with the Louisiana Ethics Administration Program[3].
  • Pay a $225 filing fee with the Clerk of Court in the parish they reside in or collect 400 signatures[4].
  • If running as a Republican or Democrat, pay an additional $112.50 filing fee with the state and/or parish executive committee of their party[4].

Campaign contributions

See also: State-by-state comparison of donations to state senate campaigns

This chart shows how many candidates ran for state senate in Louisiana in past years and the cumulative amount of campaign contributions in state senate races, including contributions in both primary and general election contests. All figures come from Follow The Money.[5]

Year Number of candidates Total contributions
2007 90 $18,266,324
2003 95 $13,648,458
1999 78 $12,374,378

The top 10 donors in 2007 were:[6]

Donor Amount
Leach Jr., Claude (Buddy) $293,669
Senate Democratic Campaign Cmte of Louisiana $249,598
Leach, Claude Buddy $237,000
Louisiana Republican Party $230,380
Quinn, Patrick & Julie $230,000
Peacock, Barrow $229,782
Jack Donahue $205,000
John A. Alario, Jr. $200,000
Louisiana Republican Legislative Delegation Campaign Cmte $185,000
Louisiana Association of Business & Industry $174,344

Races to watch

On September 12, 2011, Louisiana news organization Bayou Buzz issued a report on the top five Louisiana Senate races to watch. They are as follows:[7]

While Smith has received the support of retiring Senate President Joel Chaisson and was initially considered to be a clear replacement, the report cites Monti as gaining ground because of Smith's status as an insider.
Slagle is cited as having crossover appeal with Jackson's base, which could result in a split vote, allowing Tarver, a former senator, to reclaim his former seat.
Dorsey was reported as not accomplishing much in the legislature, while Jackson raised his profile in the House. Jackson, it notes, would not be a solid Democratic vote, which Dorsey has been.
Although LaFleur is the incumbent, his district has become more Republican. The Louisiana Committee for a Republican Majority and the GOP victory fund are expected to play big roles.
The report states that Guillory advocated for a redistricting plan pushed for by the Louisiana Family Forum, an affiliate of Focus on the Family, that would have packed black voters into districts, reducing the number of majority-minority seats. This could potentially backfire, especially since Cravins has been popular while serving as Mayor of Opelousas.

List of candidates

District 1

October 22 primary:
Republican Party A.G. Crowe: 15,717 Green check mark transparent.png Incumbent Crowe was first elected in 2007
Republican Party Nita Hutter: 7,025 - Hutter is a term-limited incumbent in the Louisiana House of Representatives

District 2

Note: Incumbent Cynthia Willard-Lewis (D) is running for election in District 3.

October 22 primary:
Democratic Party Elton Aubert: 10,932 Approveda
Democratic Party Michael Bell: 4,519
Democratic Party Troy Brown: 12,082 Approveda
Republican Party Alfred Carter: 4,966
Democratic Party George Grace Jr.: 2,198
Republican Party Zaine Kasem: 584

November 19 General election candidates:

Democratic Party Elton Aubert: 11,549
Democratic Party Troy Brown: 12,863 Green check mark transparent.png

District 3

October 22 primary:
Democratic Party Jean-Paul J. Morrell: 11,280 Green check mark transparent.png Incumbent Morrell was first elected in 2007.
Democratic Party Cynthia Willard-Lewis: 9,911 - Willard-Lewis is the current incumbent in District 2. She is running in District 3 as a result of redistricting.

District 4

October 22 primary:
Democratic Party Edwin Murray Green check mark transparent.png Incumbent Murray was first elected in 2005.

District 5

October 22 primary:
Democratic Party Karen Peterson Green check mark transparent.png Incumbent Peterson was first elected in February 2010.

District 6

Note: Incumbent Julie Quinn (R) is not running for re-election.

October 22 primary:
Republican Party Mike Mannino: 12,047
Republican Party Mack White Jr.: 12,886 Green check mark transparent.png White is the current incumbent in District 64 of the Louisiana House of Representatives.

District 7

October 22 primary:
Democratic Party David Heitmeier Green check mark transparent.png Incumbent Heitmeier was first elected in 2007.

District 8

October 22 primary:
Republican Party John Alario Jr. Green check mark transparent.png Incumbent Alario was first elected in 2007.

District 9

October 22 primary:
Republican Party Conrad Appel Green check mark transparent.png Incumbent Appel was first elected in 2007.

District 10

October 22 primary:
Republican Party Daniel Martiny Green check mark transparent.png Incumbent Martiny was first elected in 2007.

District 11

October 22 primary:
Republican Party Jack Donahue Jr.: 19,979 Green check mark transparent.png Incumbent Donahue was first elected in 2007.
Republican Party Gary Leonard: 4,580

District 12

October 22 primary:
Republican Party Beth Mizell: 14,764
Democratic Party Ben Nevers: 15,116 Green check mark transparent.png Incumbent Nevers was first elected in 2003.
Democratic Party Michael Skinner Did not appear on primary ballot

District 13

October 22 primary:
Republican Party Derek Babcock: 10,785
Republican Party Dale Erdey: 19,831 Green check mark transparent.png Incumbent Erdey was first elected in 2007.

District 14

October 22 primary:
Democratic Party Yvonne Dorsey: 9,373 Green check mark transparent.png Incumbent Dorsey was first elected in 2007.
Democratic Party Michael Jackson: 4,540
Republican Party Christopher Toombs: 2,197

District 15

October 22 primary:
Democratic Party Sharon Weston Broome Green check mark transparent.png Incumbent Broome was first elected in 2005.

District 16

October 22 primary:
Republican Party Dan Claitor Green check mark transparent.png Incumbent Claitor was first elected in 2009.

District 17

Note: Incumbent Robert Marionneaux (D) is ineligible to run because of term limits.

October 22 primary:
Democratic Party Larry Thomas: 11,000
Democratic Party Rick Ward III: 25,645 Green check mark transparent.png

District 18

October 22 primary:
Republican Party Jody Amedee Green check mark transparent.png Incumbent Amedee was first elected in 2003.

District 19

Incumbent Joel Chaisson (D) is ineligible to run because of term limits.

October 22 primary:
Republican Party Garrett Monti: 11,215
Democratic Party Gary Smith Jr.: 16,501 Green check mark transparent.png

District 20

October 22 primary:
Republican Party Norby Chabert Green check mark transparent.png Incumbent Chabert was first elected in 2009.

District 21

Incumbent Butch Gautreaux (D) is ineligible to run because of term limits.

October 22 primary:
Republican Party R.L. Allain II: 14,618 Green check mark transparent.png
Republican Party Darrin Guidry: 13,846

District 22

October 22 primary:
Republican Party Fred Mills, Jr. Green check mark transparent.png Incumbent Mills was first elected in 2011.

District 23

Incumbent Michael Michot (R) is ineligible to run because of term limits.

October 22 primary:
Republican Party Patrick Cortez Green check mark transparent.png

District 24

October 22 primary:
Democratic Party Donald Cravins: 11,210 Approveda
Democratic Party Elbert Guillory: 12,768 Approveda Incumbent Guillory was first elected in 2009.
Democratic Party Kelly Scott: 3,550

November 19 General election candidates:

Democratic Party Donald Cravins: 10,504
Democratic Party Elbert Guillory: 13,183 Green check mark transparent.png

District 25

October 22 primary:
Republican Party Dan Morrish Green check mark transparent.png Incumbent Morrish was first elected in 2007.

District 26

October 22 primary:
Republican Party Jonathan Perry Green check mark transparent.png Incumbent Perry was first elected in February 2011.

District 27

Note: Incumbent Willie Mount (D) is ineligible to run because of term limits.

October 22 primary:
Republican Party Ronnie Johns Green check mark transparent.png

District 28

October 22 primary:
Democratic Party Eric LaFleur: 19,392 Green check mark transparent.png Incumbent LaFleur was first elected in 2007.
Republican Party Paul Miller: 13,565

District 29

Note: Incumbent Joe McPherson (D) is ineligible to run because of term limits.

October 22 primary:
Democratic Party Rick Gallot: 12,992 Green check mark transparent.png
Republican Party Tony Vets: 7,579
Democratic Party Mary Wardsworth: 5,271

District 30

October 22 primary:
Republican Party James David Cain: 6,628 Approveda
Democratic Party Terry Fowler: 5,496
Republican Party John Smith: 10,216 Approveda Incumbent Smith was first elected in 2007.

November 19 General election candidates:

Republican Party James David Cain: 5,772
Republican Party John Smith: 8,457 Green check mark transparent.png

District 31

October 22 primary:
Republican Party Gerald Long Green check mark transparent.png Incumbent Long was first elected in 2007.

District 32

October 22 primary:
Republican Party Neil Riser Green check mark transparent.png Incumbent Riser was first elected in 2007.

District 33

October 22 primary:
Republican Party Michael Walsworth Green check mark transparent.png Incumbent Walsworth was first elected in 2007.

District 34

October 22 primary:
Democratic Party Francis Thompson Green check mark transparent.png Incumbent Thopmson was first elected in 2007.

District 35

October 22 primary:
Republican Party Jeff Guerriero: 13,494
Republican Party Robert Kostelka: 14,644 Green check mark transparent.png Incumbent Kostelka was first elected in 2003.
Note: Republican Party Harris Brown was on the ballot but dropped out of the race on September 21.[8]

District 36

October 22 primary:
Republican Party Robert Adley Green check mark transparent.png Incumbent Adley was first elected in 2003.

District 37

Note: Incumbent B.L. Shaw (R) is eligible but not running for re-election.

October 22 primary:
Republican Party Barrow Peacock: 10,331 Green check mark transparent.png
Republican Party Jane Smith: 8,295

District 38

October 22 primary:
Republican Party Sherri Smith Cheek: 10,570 Green check mark transparent.png Incumbent Cheek was first elected in 2003.
Democratic Party Douglas Day Did not appear on primary ballot
Republican Party Troy Terrell: 7,912

District 39

October 22 primary:
Democratic Party Lydia Jackson: 9,393 Approveda Incumbent Jackson was first elected in 2003.
Republican Party Jim Slagle: 3,259
Democratic Party Gregory Tarver: 9,015 Approveda

November 19 General election candidates:

Democratic Party Lydia Jackson: 8,295
Democratic Party Gregory Tarver: 9,168 Green check mark transparent.png

External links

See also

References