NEW ORLEANS, La. (WVUE) - Now that the lawn signs are coming up and it’s back to business as usual for both of Louisiana’s gubernatorial candidates, political analysts are weighing in on why businessman Eddie Rispone lost the election.
John Bel Edwards will keep his title as governor for another term after a close, contentious run-off with Rispone.
“It’s a mismatch as far as strategy,” says Dillard University Political Analyst Dr. Robert Collins.
Collins believes Rispone didn’t stand much of a chance against the pro-life, pro-second amendment candidate.
“He comes from a law enforcement family. His father’s a sheriff, his brother is a sheriff and oh yeah, on top of that he’s a West Point graduate and Army Ranger,” says Collins. “He probably fits the ideological profile of the average Louisiana voter better than Eddie Rispone does.”
But analysts say his inexperience and strategy hurt Rispone the most.
“Not to make the campaign about himself or his ideas based on support from President Trump,” says FOX 8 Political Analyst Mike Sherman. “You have to lay out your agenda and you have to share with voters why you want the office.”
“He gambled his entire campaign basically based on support from President Trump,” says Collins.
While the president stumped for Rispone, analysts say the incumbent kept doing his job.
“The governor does have a record of achievement and he basically simply ran on his record of achievement,” says Collins.
Then, on election day, Collins says Edwards drew more urban voters to the polls by targeted radio ads and grassroots campaigning.
“Fear motivates better than hope,” says Collins. “There was a double-digit increase in black voter turnout statewide and in the city of New Orleans. So, it certainly worked.”
“This was a monstrous upset for a Democrat to win a statewide election in the Deep South when President Donald Trump has personally intervened on the other side,” says Sherman.
Sherman says Edwards’ win is also due to votes from those who used to support his former opponent Ralph Abraham.