Tuesday is election day, and while there are very few people who are undecided at this point, the candidates are pulling out all of the stops in order to get their message out until the very last moment.
I'm neither an expert nor a prophet (unless my predictions turn out to be true and then I'll claim both titles). This is how I see several of the elections, just based on what I've observed and on discussions I have had with a number of people. Please post your opinions and predictions in the comments section.
Three seats are in play.
District 3: Incumbent Tammy Armer Smith was redistricted out of her District 4 seat and is running against incumbent Frank Kelly for the District 3 seat. It's an unusual situation, but I believe that Tammy has the edge.
Winner: Tammy Armer Smith
District 4: The seat being vacated by Tammy is being contested by three people, Richard Phipps II, Elizabeth Foster and Bill Lott. It appears that all are good candidates, but I don't have enough input or intuition to make a call in this one.
District 9: Incumbent Eddy Ray Presley is being challenged by Eric Newman. This one had possibilities, Presley offended a lot of people last year with his remarks about 'the morons in South Bossier'. With lawsuits and a lot of talk about bullying in South Bossier schools, this could have given Newman a platform to work with. From what I can tell, he hasn't taken advantage of it and appears to be a 'me too' candidate.
Winner: Eddy Presley
Bossier City Marshal
Will the Fox get into the Henhouse? Carl Wayne Richard is making another run for the office, this time against Marshal's Captain Jim Whitman. In the beginning, I would have given Richard the edge simply because of name recognition. Whitman, who was not that well known, has introduced himself and presented himself well to the public. Considering that he has some powerful backing, and that Richard has some baggage, I think Whitman has caught up.
Winner: Jim Whitman
This is a fascinating campaign. When Whit Graves first announced, he knew it was an uphill battle. At that time I would have predicted that incumbent Schuyler Marvin would carry 60% of the vote, but there are a couple of things that factor into the race. First, this is a two-parish Judicial District, consisting of Bossier and Webster Parishes. Webster Parish, where Schuyler is from, comprises about 20% of the District. Bossier, where Graves lives, is 80%. As one person who is very familiar with the system and with both of the candidates observed, at some point the tail will stop wagging the dog. It is an interesting dynamic and one that might come into play. Second, Graves has run an aggressive campaign, and from the people I've talked to, has drawn points with his attacks on the DA's Investigator, who was convicted of a misdemeanor in the past. (I apologize for originally calling this a felony, it wasn't).
This same investigator was a close friend of confessed killer and convicted robber Larry Thompson. This has caused concern to a number of people that I have heard from and sent that race into topsy-turvy mode.
Winner: Too close to call
Shreveport Mayor's Race
A small part of Shreveport is in Bossier Parish, certainly not enough to make a difference in this election. I am only posting this because at this point I'm glad that I don't live in Shreveport and glad that I don't have to deal with it.
This race has taken a very ugly turn, with accusations of mental disabilities and a 50 year old domestic abuse/murder case coming into play.
I look forward to election night and seeing what the results are. As I said in the beginning of this post, I would love to see how you all see things. Please comment.