Over 62,000 Ascension Parish voters cast ballots for the November 3 election in keeping with historically higher turnout when the US Presidency is up for grabs. That comparatively massive number amounts to 75.2% of the electorate according to Louisiana’s Secretary of State, up by three percentage points from the 2016 numbers with nearly 8,000 more voters exercising the franchise than four years ago. With four runoff elections on the ballot December 5, don’t expect numbers anywhere in the same ballpark.
Voters, understandably, seem less enthusiastic to decide:
Public Service Commission-District 1:
This race pits incumbent Eric Skrmetta, a Republican, against the Democrat challenger, Allen H. Borne, Jr. Ascension is among 11 parishes voting in this election. Just over 34,000 Ascension voters are eligible in this election, less than half of the 82,899 total Ascension electorate (according to the Secretary of State’s website).
Justice of the Peace-1st Justice Court:
A battle of two Democrats, longtime incumbent Andrew Falcon faces Tamiko Francis Garrison. 1st Justice Court encompasses all of west bank Ascension Parish. Falcon led four candidates with 34% (1553 votes) on November 3 with Garrison at 32% (1475 votes).
Donaldsonville City Council-District 2:
Another longtime incumbent, Raymond Aucoin (Democrat) led a four-man field with 48% of the vote total. Kurt Mitchell (No Party) managed a respectful 30% but has a steep hill to climb in a contest.
Gonzales City Council-Division C:
Incumbent Harold Stewart ran second on November 3, 196 votes behind upstart Terri Lynn Lambert. Stewart was hampered by another Democrat on the ballot (Willie Robinson finished behind Stewart for a third time) with Lambert, a rare Republican candidate in the heavily Democrat city. Gonzales is 51.2% Democrat, 26.6% Other, and only 22.2% Republican. No doubt Lambert’s whiteness and family past family connections also aided her more than respectable 37% vote tally.
Harold Stewart garnered just 32% of the vote which came as a surprise to many observers, including your writer. As with all runoffs, turnout is the key on December 5.
Also on the ballot are four Republican State Central Committee spots.
Early Voting begins on November 20 and runs through November 28.