22 June 2006

new sec'y of state candidate jim crowley

Crowley announces run for secretary of state
By Jim Leggett
(318) 487-6346

Jim Crowley, a Shreveport Democrat who has run for statewide and regional posts before, has announced his candidacy for secretary of state in the special election Sept. 30.

Crowley is running to fill the term of Fox McKeithen, a Republican who died in office.

Crowley ran for commissioner of elections in the early 1980s on a campaign promise to merge that office with the secretary of state. Twenty years later, that was done. He also ran unsuccessfully for the state Public Service Commission.
"I love the people of Louisiana, and I want to do everything I can to help them in this office," Crowley said of his reasons for running.

He said fair and honest elections are at the forefront. To that end, he said, he has experience as a Caddo Parish police juror in working with his clerk of court and registrar of voters to ensure a good election process.

When asked if he favors an appointed secretary of state, he said, "Unequivocally no." He said whether elected or appointed, politics remain a part of the job.

He said it will take $2 million -- $1 million in the primary and $1 million in the runoff -- to win election to the office. However, he said, he can do it for "far, far less" because he already has name recognition because of his previous election campaigns.

He is taking time off from his jobs as a retail coins and collectibles dealer and as a notary public to campaign. He also is working to obtain his Realtor's license.

As part of his campaign, Crowley is walking from place to place. He walked from Alexandria on his way to Ball but ran out of campaign leaflets at the Wal-Mart store in Pineville. He set out for Ball again on Tuesday with 1,500 leaflets and made it to Ball.

Others who have said they are running are former Louisiana Republican Party Chairman Mike Francis, a native of Jena now living in Crowley; state Sen. Jay Dardenne, R-Baton Rouge; and state Rep. Carla Dartez, D-Morgan City.

Brian Cespiva, Rapides Parish Democratic Executive Committee, said Crowley came by his office Tuesday. "No decision has been made in the secretary of state's race. It's too early," Cespiva said.

Originally published June 22, 2006

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