Louisiana 2011 Legislative Analysis – House District 77

Incumbent – John Schroder (R – Term Limited in 2019)

District Map

House District 77

Vote History

2008 President

  Current District New District
John McCain (R) 24064 (80%) 15767 (77%)
Barack Obama (D) 5486 (18%) 4236 (21%)
Others 540 (2%) 367 (2%)


2008 Senate

  Current District New District
Mary Landrieu (D) 9347 (32%) 6725 (34%)
John Kennedy (R) 19511 (66%) 12800 (64%)
Others 669 (2%) 421 (2%)


2010 Senate

  Current District New District
David Vitter (R) 17067 (78%) 11278 (76%)
Charlie Melancon (D) 3662 (17%) 2767 (19%)
Others 1080 (5%) 745 (5%)


2010 Lt Governor

  Current District New District
Jay Dardenne (R) 17250 (79%) 11492 (78%)
Caroline Fayard (D) 4488 (21%) 3265 (22%)

Current District

House District 77 is one of several districts in the Florida Parishes whose political complexion and partisan representation have been significantly changed by suburban growth. This district was one of several in the Florida Parishes that were the epicenter of Republican gains in 1995; unlike other districts in the area, this district was more Republican friendly.

The district itself contains the western fringe of St. Tammany Parish (82% of the district vote is cast here) around Madisonville, Covington, and portions of Mandeville. It also contains the southeastern portions of Tangipahoa Parish. The black voter registration here is 6%, which is one of the lowest figures of any House district. Politically, this is a very safe district for the Republicans, as residents formerly from Orleans, Jefferson, and St. Bernard Parishes have relocated to this part of the Northshore. Republicans can typically count on 3 to 1 support here, with one exception: in 2008, high Democratic turnout, Senator Landrieu’s New Orleans roots, and an appreciation for her work after Katrina enabled her to get 32% of the district vote.

Curiously, Republican representation here is a relatively recent phenomenon. When the district was first created in 1983, Democrat Eddie Deano was elected in the runoff and served for three terms. Not only was he re-elected with at least 61% of the vote, but his re-election races were all without significant Republican opposition. When he retired in 1995, however, Republican Diane Winston was elected in the runoff with 52% of the vote after strong opposition from then-Democrat Jay Blossman (Blossman later became a Republican and recently served on the Public Service Commission). After that initial contest, Rep. Winston was unopposed in 1999 and 2003, and was term limited out in 2007 – perhaps in anticipation of this, she sought an open state senate seat in 2005 and received 49% of the vote in that race against Julie Quinn.

In the open House race that ensued in 2007, two Republicans and a Democrat ran. Unlike the 1995 open seat race, the lone Democrat didn’t even come close to making the runoff – she finished third with 12%. Homebuilder and Army veteran John Schroder finished first in the primary with 46% of the vote, then he won the runoff with 51%. Both times, he ran more strongly in the Tangipahoa Parish precincts, and his 61% there enabled him to overcome a 200 vote deficit in the St. Tammany precincts. (UPDATED 9/9/2011) He is allowed to serve two more terms in the House, and was unopposed in 2011.

New District

For years, reapportionment has been good to St Tammany Parish, as it has gained a state House seat each decade. The 2011 reapportionment was no exception, as it picked up a 6th House seat between Covington and Slidell. House District 77 had the second highest population of any House district, and was 44% over populated. The district was pared back in several places: (1) the Tangipahoa precincts were removed, (2) the precincts in the western portion of Mandeville were removed, and (3) some precincts in Covington were traded between neighboring districts.

While the changes overall increased the black voter registration from 6 to 8%, there is virtually no political impact to this staunchly Republican district. (UPDATED 9/9/2011) Rep. Schroder (or any other Republican) should not have re-election issues.