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Posted at 1:20 p.m. on Aug. 22, 2013
Republican state Sen. Neil Riser received the backing of House Majority Leader Eric Cantor this week in the special election to replace former Rep. Rodney Alexander, R-La., according to a local news source.
Riser, who will seek the 5th District seat in the Oct. 19 special election, has also received endorsements from three Louisiana Republicans — John Fleming, Steve Scalise and Charles Boustany Jr.
Republican operatives consider Riser to be the front-runner in the crowded, 14-candidate field to replace Alexander, who resigned in August to take a position in Republican Gov. Bobby Jindal’s administration.
A recent poll by JMC Enterprises — conducted on Aug. 16 before the filing deadline passed — found Riser drawing 29 percent of the vote. The next closest candidate, Democratic Monroe Mayor Jamie Mayo, garnered 11 percent. The automated poll surveyed 755 likely voters and had a 3.6-percent margin of error; it did not include some of the candidates who announced they were running on the day of the filing deadline.
Other candidates in the race include:
Louisiana election law places every candidate who qualifies for the race on the general election ballot. If no candidate receives 50 percent of the vote, the election heads to a runoff with the top-two vote recipients, regardless of party.
The runoff for this special election, which is almost guaranteed with such a crowded field, is scheduled for Nov. 16.
Louisiana’s 5th District is rated a Safe Republican contest by Rothenberg Political Report/Roll Call. GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney carried the district with 61 percent in 2012.