The second Republican has entered the race for Governor of Louisiana.
U.S. Rep. Ralph Abraham, M.D. announced that he will run against current Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards in 2019 Thursday.
“I’m running for Governor, and I intend to win,” he said.
Abraham’s announcement comes on the heels of U.S. Sen. John Kennedy revealing that he will not be running in the election.
We’re told Abraham is waiting to formally launch his campaign on January 1, 2019.
The former veterinarian and current member of the House of Representatives revealed his decision in the following statement:
Ralph is a conservative Republican and has served in Congress since 2015 as the U.S. Representative for Louisiana’s 5th Congressional District. It is the largest district in terms of area in the state and includes 24 parishes in North, Central and Southeast Louisiana.
As a Congressman, Ralph has worked on issues that affect all of Louisiana. He is a member of the Armed Services Committee and has helped secure funding and resources for Louisiana’s military installations at Fort Polk, Barksdale Air Force Base and the Naval Air Station in Belle Chasse. He is also Louisiana’s only representative on the Agriculture Committee, and he has served on the Science, Space and Technology Committee and the Veterans’ Affairs Committee.
Before joining Congress, he worked as a general family doctor in rural Richland Parish. He is also a veterinarian, veteran, farmer, and business owner.
He also volunteers extensively as a pilot for the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary, the Civil Air Patrol and the Pilots for Patients not-for-profit organization.
Ralph and his wife, Dianne, have been married for 43 years. They have three grown children and nine grandchildren. They are members of Alto Baptist Church.
Governor John Bel Edwards provided this statement in response to Rep. Abraham entering the Governor’s race:
“On Monday, Representative Abraham said he couldn’t launch a campaign for governor because it would distract him from important work on the farm bill, soy bean crisis, looming government shutdown, flood insurance expiration and other issues the people of Louisiana have entrusted him to handle on their behalf. None of those issues have been resolved. Now, just a few days later, he’s abandoning those responsibilities along with the congressional office he was re-elected to exactly one month ago. For the sake of the people of Louisiana, it is my hope that he seriously considers whether or not he is capable of running for governor while fulfilling his duties in Washington, DC.
“I welcome this debate. I’ve got a consistent record of working across the aisle to get things done for Louisiana. Together, we’ve turned a $2 billion budget deficit into a budget surplus. Last year, we reduced the tax burden on the people of Louisiana by $600 million. Our economy is the 12th fastest growing in the country. More people are working in Louisiana than ever before. And we are securing the largest economic development projects in our state’s history. The state and our people are much better off now than they were three years ago, and I look forward to another 5 years of putting the people of Louisiana first.”