BATON ROUGE, La. (KPEL News) - Billy Nungesser has been flirting with a gubernatorial run for a while, but we may be getting closer to a decision. Louisiana's Lt. Governor has announced the day he'll share his decision with the rest of the state - his birthday.

According to WDSU, the 63-year-old will officially announce his intentions for the 2023 election cycle on January 10, the day he turns 64.

Nungesser is one of several officials expected to make a run for governor in 2023, however, recent developments have really shaken up how the race may play out.

Credit: Landry Campaign
Credit: Landry Campaign

Attorney General Jeff Landry announced his candidacy previously, becoming the first (and so far only) Republican to do so. Nungesser and state treasurer John Schroder have also long been hinting at a run for the job to replace term-limited Democratic Governor John Bel Edwards.

But Landry has also secured some big endorsements already. Both of Edwards' Republican opponents from his 2019 re-election, Ralph Abraham and Eddie Rispone, endorsed Landry, and the state GOP has officially made its endorsement despite the fact that many other candidates showed signs they were going to jump in.

Nungesser harshly criticized the Louisiana GOP's endorsement, calling it "backroom dealing" and sharing the personal contact information of the LAGOP's executive committee as an apparent suggestion for his supporters to call those officials.

Credit: Chris Graythen, Getty Images
Credit: Chris Graythen, Getty Images

“The notion that a handful of people could go into a back room and emerge with an endorsement of a candidate without ever considering others who are running or considering running is arrogant, ill-conceived and detrimental to the party," Nungesser said in his statement. "The decision by this small, rogue group of party officials is disrespectful to the hundreds of elected party members and hundreds of thousands of Republicans. At the root of this decision is money, and the party chairman and his lieutenants decided to embrace the payday over policy. It will very likely backfire because we have a well-informed electorate whose vote can’t be bought.”

The Rest of the Field

If Nungesser announces, he may be the only other Republican to jump in. Schroder has been slow to get into the race, despite hinting he is interested. Nungesser, Schroder, and state senator Sharon Hewitt - all potential candidates - were deeply critical of the LAGOP's endorsement of Landry.

U.S. Senator Bill Cassidy announced last week that he was not running, but Senator John Kennedy said he was considering it.

There is no clear picture, though there has recently been speculation that Dr. Shawn Wilson, transportation secretary under Gov. John Bel Edwards, may also be considering a run, especially after not ruling it out in some recent media appearances.

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