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Taking the High Road in the 4th Runoff

courtesy: Johnson and Jones campaigns
Mike Johnson, Marshall Jones

Fifteen days till the runoff election, where the 4th Congressional District has Democrat Marshall Jones and Republican Mike Johnson each vying for the opportunity to go to Washington. But it’s not turning into the typical partisan pugilism.

Jones, a Shreveport businessman, says he and Johnson are more alike than different.

“We’re both pro-life. We’re both pro-2nd amendment. We’re both pro-military. My father and grandfather who raised me were both military veterans,” Jones says. “And we’re both pro-family.”

Johnson, the state representative from Bossier City, is sticking closer to the party line.

“I like Marshall. You know, we’re friends; we’ve been friends a long time,” Johnson told Shreveport radio station KEEL the day after the primary. “But Marshall is a Democrat. He’s known by most folks to have pretty liberal views on everything.”

Johnson said then he was hopeful they could both keep the rest of the race on the high road.

“I’m looking forward to a positive race, that he and I can debate and discuss the issues and real solutions to the problems that ail the nation and the congressional district.”

But when the state Democratic Party issued its endorsement of Jones, it came with a statement from party chair Karen Carter Peterson that said, “Rep. Mike Johnson has made a career of putting hate and bias at the top of his list, earning a living from the taxpayers by catering to a small few special interests.”

Johnson was the author of the “Pastor Protection Act”, which failed in committee, yet was subsequently made an executive order by then-Governor Bobby Jindal. In addition, he represented former state Health Secretary Kathy Kliebert in a federal suit challenging the constitutionality of certain abortion restrictions.

Jones subsequently issued a statement, saying while he accepted the state party endorsement, he disavowed Peterson’s comments.

"Mike Johnson is a good man and I have nothing but positive things to say about Mike.”

And, in fact, Jones has even been semi-positive about working with President-elect Trump – for the good of the constituency.

“I’m going to be doing everything I can to get along with him and with his administration, because that’s what’s in y’all’s best interest,” Jones said

The runoff is December 10th, and one thing is certain: the next congressman from the 4th District will have the initials “M.J.”