(KSLA) - U.S. Rep. Ralph Abraham, who represents Northeast and Central Louisiana in Congress, announced Thursday that he will run for Governor in 2019.
Abraham is now the second Republican to challenge Gov. John Bel Edwards, a Democrat.
“Louisiana needs a strong leader who can take on the challenges we face, and our great state just isn’t getting that from the current governor,” said Abraham in a statement before the announcement.
Edwards released a statement questioning whether Abraham could continue being an effective Congressman while running for Governor.
“For the sake of the people of Louisiana, it is my hope that he seriously considers whether or not he is capable of running for governor while fulfilling his duties in Washington, DC," said Edwards.
Abraham, who was first elected to represent Louisiana’s 5th Congressional District in 2014, is the first major candidate to announce a challenge to Edwards. On Monday, U.S. Sen. John Kennedy announced he will not enter the race.
The only other candidate to announce a campaign so far is Baton Rouge businessman Eddie Rispone.