By Message Staff
ALTO, La. (LBM) – Ralph Abraham, M.D., a Republican who represents the 5th Congressional District, announced Thursday, Dec. 6, he has entered the 2019 gubernatorial race.
“I’m running for governor, and I intend to win,” Abraham said in a brief statement released on his personal Facebook page.
Abraham, a member of Alto Baptist Church, was first elected to Congress in 2014. His district encompasses 24 parishes in the northeastern, central and southeastern areas of the state. He serves as a member of the House Armed Services Committee, the Agriculture Committee and the House Committee on Science, Space and Technology.
The three-term congressman joins Baton Rouge businessman Eddie Rispone, also a Republican, in challenging the incumbent John Bel Edwards, a Democrat.
Abraham is a physician, veterinarian, business owner, farmer, pilot and veteran. He was a first lieutenant with the 20th Special Forces Group Airborne Division of the Army National Guard from 1986-1989, according to his website.
He is a native of rural Richland Parish where he and his wife, Dianne, live. He holds degrees from Mangham High School and Louisiana State University.
During his time in Congress, Abraham has been a consistent pro-life advocate, voting against funding for abortion providers like Planned Parenthood. A member of the pro-life caucus, Abraham has spoken at various events around the state, such as the 2016 CENLA Pro-Life Prayer Breakfast at Louisiana College in Pineville and the 2018 Louisiana Life March CENLA in Alexandria-Pineville.
If elected, Abraham would join five other Baptist men who have served as governor of Louisiana: William Wright Heard, 1900-1904; Huey Pierce Long, 1928-1932; Oscar Kelly Allen, 1932-1936; Earl Kemp Long, 1939-1940, 1948-1952, 1956-1960; and, James Houston Davis, 1944-1948, 1960-1964.