Louisiana gubernatorial election, 1995

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Louisiana gubernatorial election, 1995
1991 ←
October 3, 1995
→ 1999

  GovFoster1.JPG Cleo Fields.jpg
Nominee Mike Foster Cleo Fields
Party Republican Democratic
Popular vote 984,499 565,861
Percentage 63.50% 36.50%

LAGovElection Nov95.png

Parish Results

Governor before election

Edwin Edwards

Elected Governor

Mike Foster

The Louisiana gubernatorial election of 1995 resulted in the election of Mike Foster as governor of Louisiana, after defeating Cleo Fields in the runoff.


In 1995 all elections in Louisiana—with the exception of U.S. presidential elections—followed a variation of the open primary system called the jungle primary (the system has since been abandoned for all federal elections but remains in use for state and local elections). Candidates of any and all parties are listed on one ballot; voters need not limit themselves to the candidates of one party. Unless one candidate takes more than 50% of the vote in the first round, a run-off election is then held between the top two candidates, who may in fact be members of the same party.[2] In this election, the first round of voting was held on October 21, 1995, and the runoff was held on November 18, 1995.


The early field included eight individuals considered to be "major" candidates. These were state Representative Robert Adley, U.S. Representative Cleo Fields, State Senator Mike Foster, U.S. Representative William J. Jefferson, incumbent state Treasurer Mary Landrieu, former Governor Buddy Roemer, incumbent Lieutenant Governor Melinda Schwegmann, and former Governor David Treen.


The makeup of the field led some analysts to dub this the "twins election", as each major candidate had a rival who appealed to a similar constituency or voter base. The sets of "twins" were: two mainstream Republican former governors (Treen and Roemer); two moderate Democrat female state-wide office holders with ties to New Orleans (Landrieu and Schwegmann); two conservative Democrat state legislators (Foster and Adley); and two liberal, black Democrat U.S. representatives (Fields and Jefferson).

Treen and Jefferson eventually chose not to officially enter the race, and Foster switched his party identification to Republican at the time of qualifying. Also, attorney Phil Preis entered the race as a Democrat, and with a self-financed campaign was able to enter the top tier of candidates. Eight minor candidates also qualified for the ballot.


Parishes won by Gubernatorial Candidates in the October 21, 1995 Election.
  Mike Foster (38)
  Cleo Fields (18)
  Buddy Roemer (4)
  Mary Landrieu (2)
  Phil Preis (2)

First voting round, October 21

Candidate Party affiliation Votes received Percentage of votes cast
Mike Foster Republican 385,267 26.10%
Cleo Fields Democrat 280,921 19.03%
Mary Landrieu Democrat 271,938 18.43%
Buddy Roemer Republican 263,330 17.84%
Phil Preis Democrat 133,271 9.03%
Melinda Schwegmann Democrat 71,288 4.83%
Robert Adley Democrat 27,534 1.87%
Arthur D. "Jim" Nichols None/Other 16,616 1.13%
Gene H. Alexander Democrat 5,688 0.39%
Kenneth Woods None/Other 4,964 0.34%
Darryl Paul Ward None/Other 4,210 0.29%
Belinda Alexandrenko Democrat 3,161 0.21%
Lonnie Creech None/Other 2,338 0.16%
Ronnie Glynn Johnson None/Other 1,884 0.13%
Anne Thompson None/Other 1,416 0.10%

Runoff, November 18

Candidate Party affiliation Votes received Percentage of votes cast
Mike Foster Republican 984,499 63.50%
Cleo Fields Democrat 565,861 36.50%

Preceded by
1991 gubernatorial election
Louisiana gubernatorial elections Succeeded by
1999 gubernatorial election


Secretary of State Elections Division. Official Election Results Database