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Sun Oct 27, 2019, 05:04 PM

Baton Rouge debate slated to be only joint appearance for John Bel Edwards, Eddie Rispone in runoff

The debate between Democratic Gov. John Bel Edwards and Republican businessman Eddie Rispone next week in Baton Rouge will likely be the only opportunity voters will have to see the two men appear on the same stage before the runoff election that will decide Louisiana’s next governor.

Rispone’s campaign on Friday said the debate, which is slated for Wednesday evening at 7 p.m., is the only one in which he will participate. Both campaigns said they have no other joint appearances on the books.

The debate is being held by Louisiana Public Broadcasting and Council for a Better Louisiana and will take place at LPB’s Baton Rouge studios. There will not be a live audience.

The Nov. 16 runoff election will decide the fate of the Deep South’s only Democratic governor, and President Donald Trump is expected to return to Louisiana as part of an effort to nationalize the election and lift the Republican candidate to victory in a state Trump won by 20 points. While Edwards' approval rating is relatively strong, he faces a tough reelection against his GOP opponent, who benefits from an increasingly Republican-friendly electorate in Louisiana, as well as the backing of prominent party figures both in and out of state.

Read more: https://www.theadvocate.com/baton_rouge/news/politics/elections/article_3b65b984-f752-11e9-b497-a3b454d85374.html

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