- Associated Press - Thursday, October 13, 2016

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) - The Latest on a lawsuit objecting to Senate race debate criteria (all times local):

5 p.m.

The first statewide TV debate in Louisiana’s U.S. Senate race will go on as planned - without a judge adding anyone to the participant list.

Judge Tim Kelley refused Thursday to stop the debate or to force Louisiana Public Broadcasting and the Council for A Better Louisiana to add candidate Troy Hebert to the Oct. 18 debate stage.

Hebert, a former state lawmaker running without party affiliation, filed a lawsuit challenging the criteria as unfair. Two other candidates who didn’t make the cut later joined him in the suit.

All three men, none of them lawyers, represented themselves over the two-day hearing.

Only five of the 24 Senate candidates met the debate criteria, which required participants to have raised at least $1 million and polled at 5 percent support.

___

8:30 a.m.

A judge will decide whether to force U.S. Senate candidate Troy Hebert into the race’s first televised debate planned for Oct. 18 - or to stop the debate altogether.

Hebert, a former state lawmaker running without party affiliation, filed a lawsuit challenging the criteria that excluded him from the debate being held by Louisiana Public Broadcasting and the Council for A Better Louisiana.

A two-day hearing on Hebert’s injunction request is expected to wrap up Thursday with a ruling from Judge Tim Kelley. Hebert, who is not a lawyer, has been representing himself in court.

Only five of the 24 Senate candidates met the debate criteria, which required participants to have raised at least $1 million and polled at 5 percent support. Hebert is not fundraising for his campaign.

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