Simone B. Champagne
|Simone Becnel Champagne|
|Louisiana State Representative from District 49 (Iberia and Vermilion parishes)|
|Preceded by||Troy Hebert|
December 27, 1954 |
Jeanerette, Iberia Parish
|Political party||Democratic-turned-Republican Party (July 2010)|
|Spouse(s)||Gary Paul Champagne, Sr.|
|Children||Five children, including
Gary Champagne, Jr.
Simone Becnel Champagne (born December 27, 1954) is a Republican member of the Louisiana House of Representatives from District 49 (Iberia and Vermilion parishes) in south Louisiana. She resides in Jeanerette in Iberia Parish, where in 1971 she graduated from Jeanerette High School. Thereafter, she studied banking in continuing education programs.
From 2002 to 2007, Champagne was the chief administrative officer for the combined Iberia Parish and city of New Iberia government. She resigned to run for state representative and faced no opposition. The incumbent Democrat, later Independent, Troy Hebert, also of Jeanerette, vacated the seat because of term limits and instead was elected to the Louisiana State Senate. Champagne won her House race as a Democrat, but in July 2010, she switched party allegiance. Representative Champagne serves on the House committees on (1) Appropriations, (2) Municipal, Parochial and Cultural Affairs, (3) Natural Resources and Environment, (4) House Executive Committee, and (5) Joint Legislative Committee on the Budget. She is a member of the Acadiana delegation, the Legislative Women's Caucus, the Republican legislative delegation, and the Louisiana Rural Caucus. In 2009, Champagne was rated 100 percent by the Louisiana Right to Life Federation and the conservative Louisiana Family Forum and 65 percent by the trade association, the Louisiana Association of Business and Industry.
Special Senate election
Early in 2011, Champagne ran in a special election for the state Senate but lost to a House colleague, Fred Henry Mills, Jr., a banker and pharmacist from St. Martin Parish. Mills also switched from Democrat-to-Republican in 2010.
In a campaign statement for the Senate race, Champagne said: "Government spending and growth is the problem, it hinders our ability to grow our economy and small businesses. Now more than ever we need a true conservative in the State Senate, and that is why I decided to run for this important seat . . . If we want to create jobs we must get government out of the way. No more moratoriums, no more regulations and we can’t afford higher taxes. As a mother of five and grandmother of three, I’ve stretched a budget and done more with less. Shouldn’t our government do the same? . . . If we have learned anything in the past two years it is that we cannot afford to allow government to run rampant and continue the out-of-control spending. That is why I voted against the bloated Louisiana budget last year and supported legislation that allowed Louisiana to opt out of Barack Obama's costly health-care mandate."
Mills polled 12,812 votes in the special Senate election, or 60 percent of the total cast in the first round of balloting. Champagne finished second with 4,040 votes (19 percent). Champagne campaigned as a "Reagan Republican" and had the open support of Republican U.S. Senator David Vitter. Independent David Groner finished third with 2,534 votes (12 percent). The remaining ballots favored two other Republican candidates and a second Independent hopeful. No Democrats contested the position.
Champagne won reelection in the primary election held on October 22, 2011, having amassed more than two-thirds of the ballots cast over both Democratic and Republican opponents.
- "Rep. Simone B. Champagne". house.louisiana.gov. Retrieved February 20, 2011.
- "Membership in the Louisiana House of Representatives, 1812-2012". legis.state.la.us. Retrieved February 20, 2011.
- "Representative Simone B. Champagne (LA)". votesmart.org. Retrieved February 20, 2011.
- "Special election returns for Louisiana State Senate, January 22, 2011". electionresults.sos. Retrieved February 24, 2011.
- Simone B. Champagne (January 5, 2011). "Why I'm Running for Senate District 22". The Daily Iberian. Retrieved February 26, 2011.
- Nathan Stubbs (January 19, 2011). "Can anyone knock out frontrunner Fred Mills in the District 22 state Senate race?". theind.com. Retrieved February 26, 2011.
- "Louisiana primary election returns, October 22, 2011". staticresults.sos.la.gov. Retrieved October 22, 2011.
|Louisiana House of Representatives|
|Louisiana State Representative from District 49 (Iberia and Vermilion parishes)
Simone Becnel Champagne