Friday, April 13, 2007

Breaux: I will not be a candidate for LA. Governor

Breaux: I will not be a candidate for La. governor
by DOUG SIMPSON - Associated Press (LA) (excerpt)

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — Former U.S. Sen. John Breaux declined to enter the race for Louisiana governor Friday, saying questions about his eligibility would hamper his ability to run an issue-based campaign.

The announcement followed a decision by Attorney General Charles Foti not to get involved in determining whether Breaux, a Maryland resident since 2005, is eligible for the Oct. 20 primary.

Breaux, in a statement issued late Friday through the Louisiana Democratic Party, said the failure of a "clear declaration of my status as a (Louisiana) citizen greatly inhibits my ability to conduct a campaign based on the issues instead of the law."

"I said I would be guided by the Attorney General's opinion," Breaux said, "and therefore will not be a candidate for governor."

A spokeswoman for the Louisiana Democratic Party said Breaux asked the party to distribute the statement on his behalf. Breaux's spokesman Brian Hale confirmed the announcement and said the senator would not comment further.

Louisiana Republican Party Chairman Roger Villere Jr. said Breaux's decision not to run shows that "our position was correct all along, that John Breaux really wasn't qualified."

"He was hoping he'd get a 'Hail Mary' catch, but instead our attorney general punted," Villere said. "I think we've seen kind of the end of the politics of old and can now look forward to something new."

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