Louisiana Senate scramble begins
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Reps. John FlemingJohn Calvin FlemingOvernight Energy: Watchdog opens investigation into Interior chief | Judge halts Pruitt truck pollution rule decision | Winners, losers in EPA, Interior spending bill amendments Five GOP lawmakers mulling bid to lead conservative caucus Coast Guard suspends search for missing Ohio plane MORE (R-La.) and Charles BoustanyCharles William BoustanyLobbying world Dems face hard choice for State of the Union response Americans worried about retirement should look to employee ownership MORE Jr. (R-La.) will run for the Senate seat being vacated by retiring Sen. David VitterDavid Bruce VitterSenate panel advances Trump nominee who wouldn't say if Brown v. Board of Education was decided correctly Planned Parenthood targets judicial nominee over abortion comments Trump nominates wife of ex-Louisiana senator to be federal judge MORE (R-La.) in Louisiana in a race that will likely attract a crowded GOP field.

Boustany has been eyeing the seat for months, and said in a statement on Monday that he’d enter the race, with a formal announcement from his home town of LaFayette coming “in the near future.”


Meanwhile, a source with knowledge of Fleming’s plans told The Hill on Monday that he also plans to enter the race soon. Fleming confirmed that he is eying the race in a statement.

"Washington faces many challenges these days and today’s United States Senate needs more trusted conservatives going there to make decisions and choices that put the people first and not the business as usual crowd," Fleming said in a statement Monday afternoon. "Louisiana wants a leader that will take their values to D.C. and will fight for them without wavering."

Louisiana’s jungle primary will likely attract several other Republicans. Among the names mentioned are State Treasurer John Kennedy, Public Service Commissioner Scott Angelle and former Air Force Col. Rob Maness, who ran in 2014.

Over the weekend, Democrat John Bel Edwards easily defeated Vitter in the state’s gubernatorial race, securing a surprise victory for Democrats in the deep red state. In his concession speech, Vitter surprised political watchers when he announced he would not seek another term in the Senate.

Republicans will still be favored to hold Vitter’s seat, although emboldened Democrats will see an opportunity to steal a seat from Republicans in a presidential election year with the Senate up for grabs.

Former Sen. Mary LandrieuMary Loretta LandrieuLobbying world Former New Orleans mayor: It's not my 'intention' to run for president Dems grasp for way to stop Trump's Supreme Court pick MORE (D-La.), who frequently clashed with Vitter, will not run for his seat, sources said, though her brother, New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu, is taking a serious look at the race, according to a source with knowledge of the situation. 

- This story was updated at 1:30 p.m.