The Latest: Louisiana governor pushes back on Trump tweets

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — The Latest on Donald Trump’s rally in Louisiana (all times local):

1:20 p.m.

Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards is pushing back, lightly, against President Donald Trump’s Twitter criticism of his performance.

Trump is heading to Louisiana on Friday for an election eve rally calling on Republicans to vote against the Deep South’s only Democratic governor. He’s trying to keep Edwards from reaching 50% voter support and avoiding a November runoff election.

In a tweet, the president slammed Edwards for supporting taxes and called him “suspect” on the Second Amendment.

Edwards replied on Twitter. He noted the taxes had Republican and Democratic support. He defended his pro-gun record, which matches Trump’s positions, saying Louisiana residents know he’s worked to protect Second Amendment rights.

He ended the tweet, telling Trump: “Look forward to working w/ you in my 2nd term.”

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12 p.m.

President Donald Trump is tweeting about his trip to Louisiana.

The president is calling on Republicans to vote Saturday against Democratic Gov. John Bel Edwards. He’s trying to keep Edwards from reaching 50% voter support and avoiding a November runoff election.

Trump says Louisiana’s GOP voters should pick “either of our two great Republican Candidates.” He didn’t mention GOP contenders U.S. Rep. Ralph Abraham and businessman Eddie Rispone by name.

The president is traveling Friday to the southwestern city of Lake Charles for an anti-Edwards rally. In his tweet, he slammed the governor for supporting taxes, without mentioning Republican legislative support for those taxes.

Trump also called Edwards “suspect” on the Second Amendment, even though the governor’s pro-gun positions match the stances of Trump, Abraham and Rispone.

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6 a.m.

President Donald Trump is traveling to Louisiana for an election eve rally that’s less about the Republican candidates for governor and more a hit against Democratic incumbent John Bel Edwards.

Trump’s aiming to keep the Deep South’s only Democratic governor from a primary win, while not telling voters which GOP contender to back in Saturday’s election.

Republican loyalties are split between U.S. Rep. Ralph Abraham and businessman Eddie Rispone. Both will attend Friday’s rally.

In Louisiana, all candidates run against each other on the same ballot. Republicans are trying to keep Edwards from topping 50%, which would force him into a November runoff.

Edwards has downplayed Trump’s visit, calling it a sign of Washington’s hyperpartisanship. He also has avoided criticizing Trump, instead focusing on the message that he works well with the White House.

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