Mar 30, 2010 3:49 PM by Melissa Canone
BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) - The head of the state Republican Party
announced Tuesday that he is running for lieutenant governor this
Louisiana Republican Party Chairman Roger Villere said he was
launching a campaign focused on economic development, tourism
promotion and conservative values.
"We need strong, principled leaders who stand for what they
believe and act that way as well," Villere said in a statement
announcing his bid for office.
Villere, a Metairie florist, joins two other Republicans who
have announced for the race: Secretary of State Jay Dardenne and
St. Tammany Parish President Kevin Davis.
Villere has been head of the state GOP since 2004. During that
time, Republicans took hold of their first U.S. Senate seat in
Louisiana since Reconstruction and picked up more statewide elected
jobs and legislative seats.
A list of politicians has expressed interest in the lieutenant
governor's job vacated by Mitch Landrieu, who was recently elected
mayor of New Orleans.
The primary election to fill the lieutenant governor's seat will
be held Oct. 2, with a runoff Nov. 2.
Besides being first in the succession line if something happens
to the governor, Louisiana's lieutenant governor oversees the
Department of Culture, Recreation and Tourism and manages parks,
museums, the state library and tourism efforts.
But there's still a question of whether the job will exist after
Gov. Bobby Jindal is proposing to abolish the position as a
cost-cutting move. Lawmakers will debate the idea in the current
legislative session. It would take a constitutional change, which
requires approval from two-thirds of lawmakers and a majority of