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Troy Carter wins Louisiana special election, AP projects

Louisiana State Senator Troy Carter, a Democrat, will win the special election runoff for Louisiana’s 2nd congressional district, The Associated Press projects. He will succeed former Democratic Congressman Cedric Richmond, who left the seat to take a role as a White House senior adviser.

“I want to be clear — I welcome everyone to our tent because the election is over and I represent everyone,” Carter said during his victory remarks. “Now I want to go to Washington to be your voice.”

Carter was backed by Richmond and House Democratic Whip Jim Clyburn. He beat Democratic state Senator Karen Carter Peterson in Saturday’s runoff after winning 36% in the March 20 primary while Peterson received 23% of the vote.

“The work continues,” Peterson said after conceding to Carter. “I’m going to continue to fight for a progressive agenda. We’re going to hold our leaders accountable for that agenda.”

Louisiana’s 2nd district encompasses New Orleans and a portion of Baton Rouge.

Carter pitched himself as someone who would have Richmond’s, and thus the White House’s ear. He also said he would work with the Republicans who represent Louisiana in Congress. 

“When you’re elected, you’re elected to represent the entire district. Republicans, Democrats, independents and others,” he said Thursday during a debate Thursday. 

“They recognize that in order to get things done, they need to send someone to Washington who can build bridges, not walls. [Who] can establish relationships that mean something, not kick rocks because you don’t get your way. Not spew lies because you’re losing,” Carter said.

Peterson was backed by New Orleans Mayor LaToya Cantrell and national progressive figures such as Senator Elizabeth Warren, Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Georgia gubernatorial candidate Stacy Abrams.

Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards, a Democrat, congratulated Carter on his win. 

“Louisiana now, more than ever, needs bold advocates to fight for the many needs of our great state in Washington, D.C.,” he said. “I am confident that Troy will dutifully fill this role along with the rest of our current delegation, and I look forward to continuing to work with him.”

Carter’s victory now fills a seat that has been left vacant since mid-January, but it does not change the makeup of the House.

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