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Edwin Edwards

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Edwin Edwards
50th Governor of Louisiana
In office
January 13, 1992 – January 8, 1996
LieutenantMelinda Schwegmann
Preceded byBuddy Roemer
Succeeded byMike Foster
In office
March 12, 1984 – March 14, 1988
LieutenantBobby Freeman
Preceded byDave Treen
Succeeded byBuddy Roemer
In office
May 9, 1972 – March 10, 1980
LieutenantJimmy Fitzmorris
Preceded byJohn McKeithen
Succeeded byDave Treen
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Louisiana's 7th district
In office
October 2, 1965 – May 9, 1972
Preceded byAshton Thompson
Succeeded byJohn Breaux
Personal details
Edwin Washington Edwards

(1927-08-07)August 7, 1927
Marksville, Louisiana, U.S.
DiedJuly 12, 2021(2021-07-12) (aged 93)
Gonzales, Louisiana, U.S.
Political partyDemocratic
Spouse(s)Elaine Schwartzenburg 1949–1989
Candace Picou (1994–2004)
Trina Grimes Scott (2011–2021)
Alma materLouisiana State University, Baton Rouge
Military service
Allegiance United States
Branch/service United States Navy
Years of service1945–1946
Battles/warsWorld War II

Edwin Washington Edwards (August 7, 1927 – July 12, 2021) was an American politician and member of the Democratic Party. He served as the U.S. Representative from 1965 to 1972 and as the 50th Governor of Louisiana for four terms (1972–1980, 1984–1988 and 1992–1996), twice as many elected terms as any other Louisiana chief executive.

Political career[change | change source]

He served a total of sixteen years in office, the sixth-longest serving gubernatorial tenure in post-Constitutional U.S. history at 5,784 days.[1] He was a colorful, powerful and legendary figure in Louisiana politics. Edwards, who has been dubbed the "very last of the line of New Deal Southern Democrats",[2] was long dogged by charges of corruption.

Conviction and imprisonment[change | change source]

In 2001, he was found guilty of racketeering charges and sentenced to ten years in Federal prison. Edwards began serving his sentence in October 2002 in Fort Worth, Texas, and was later transferred to the federal facility in Oakdale, Louisiana. Edwards was released from federal prison in January 2011, after serving eight years.

Without a pardon, Edwards remains ineligible to seek the governorship until 15 years have passed from the end of his sentence.[3] In 2013, Edwards co-starred, alongside his third wife Trina, in an A&E reality show, The Governor's Wife based on their life together.[4][5] In 2014, Edwards ran in the 2014 election to represent Louisiana's 6th congressional district in the United States House of Representatives.[6] He placed first in the jungle primary, but was crushed by nearly 25 points in the runoff election.[7]

Personal life[change | change source]

Edwards was born in Marksville, Louisiana. He studied at Louisiana State University. Edwards was married to Elaine Schwartzenburg from 1949 until they divorced in 1989. Then he was married to Candace Picou from 1994 until they divorced in 2004. Then he married his current wife, Trina Grimes Scott in 2011. Edwards has four children with Elaine and one with Trina.

In 2015, Edwards was hospitalized for pneumonia.[8] On December 13, 2016, Edwards was hospitalized under stable condition again for pneumonia in Baton Rouge.[9]

Edwards was sent to hospice care for pain in his lungs in Gonzales, Louisiana on July 6, 2021.[10] He died six days later on July 12 at the age of 93.[11] The cause of death was respiratory failure caused by pneumonia.[12]

References[change | change source]

  1. Ostermeier, Eric (April 10, 2013). "The Top 50 Longest-Serving Governors of All Time". Smart Politics. Archived from the original on November 30, 2014. Retrieved June 17, 2015.
  2. Bill Nichols (April 10, 2014). "Edwin Edwards' last stand". Politico. Retrieved April 10, 2014.
  3. Lauren McGaughy (October 29, 2013). "Former Gov. Edwin Edwards considering return to politics". NOLA.com.
  4. Kondolojy, Amanda (September 26, 2013). "A&E Network Premieres 'The Governor's Wife' on Sunday October 27 at 10PM". TV by the Numbers (Press release). Archived from the original on January 6, 2016. Retrieved November 29, 2015.
  5. Stanley, Alessandra (October 25, 2013). "Real Politician of Louisiana, at Home". The New York Times.
  6. "Ex-Con Ex-Governor Running for Congress". Bloomberg. February 19, 2014. Retrieved February 20, 2014.
  7. "Runoff election returns, December 6, 2014". Louisiana Secretary of State. Retrieved December 6, 2014.
  8. Dominic Messa (December 13, 2016). "Former Governor Edwin Edwards in Hospital With Pneumonia". WWLTV.com. Retrieved December 14, 2016.
  9. JR Ball (December 13, 2016). "Former Gov. Edwin Edwards hospitalized, recovering from pneumonia". NOLA.com. Retrieved December 14, 2016.
  10. Edwin Edwards in hospice care at Louisiana home
  11. Former La. Governor Edwin Edwards has died at 93
  12. Edwin Edwards, Louisiana populist who served 4 terms as governor and 8 years in prison, dies at 93

Other websites[change | change source]

Media related to Edwin Edwards at Wikimedia Commons Quotations related to Edwin Edwards at Wikiquote