May 17, 2017 09:47 AM

Speculation that the Public Service Commission member, who ran unsuccessfully for governor in 2015 and the U.S. House last year, will take a job in Trump administration has South Louisiana politicos bandying around potential candidates.

PSC Commissioner Scott Angelle concedes the runoff for a seat in the U.S. House of Representatives last November in Breaux Bridge.
Photo by Karley Nugent

In the wake of news that Pubic Service Commissioner Scott Angelle of Breaux Bridge was being vetted in March for a position with the Interior Department’s Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, politicos have turned their attention to the possibility of his seat opening up on the PSC.

The District 2 seat stretches from Lafayette to Baton Rouge and includes a portion of the central coastline in the Terrebonne-Lafourche region.

If Angelle does indeed get an appointment from the Trump administration, he would then have to resign his seat on or before June 14 for a special election to be added to the fall ballot, according to the secretary of state’s office.

If a move happens after that date, then it could turn into either a standalone special election or a long haul to the regularly scheduled election in 2018.

Either way, the governor would be able to appoint a temporary replacement until an election could be held.

Speculation churned over the PSC seat last in 2016 when Angelle made an unsuccessful bid for Congress.

Dr. Craig C. Greene of Baton Rouge, an orthopedic surgeon, and former state Rep. Joe Harrison of Napoleonville were angling hard for the job then.

Also thrown into the mix at the time were former Baton Rouge Metro Councilman Joel Boe and state Rep. Julie Emerson, R-Carencro, who has since cultivated deeper roots in the region as the former transition head for Congressman Clay Higgins.

Another name to keep in play is Senate Natural Resources Chairman Norby Chabert, R-Houma, who lives in the southern end of the PSC district. Local politicos have been trying to get Chabert to consider running for the seat over the past few years.

From the same area, former Rep. Lenar Whitney has been mentioned as a possible candidate.

Of course, this may all be fruitless speculation unless Angelle has been offered a federal post — and he decides to take it.

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