BATON ROUGE — Contenders to be Louisiana’s next U.S. senator are struggling to break away from the pack in a race where the top tier of candidates have stayed remarkably close in the polls and where only a few percentage points could determine who reaches the runoff election.

The five major candidates — out of 24 people who signed up for the race — have locked in their campaign narratives, continue to take direct hits against their opponents and are making their final pitches to voters ahead of Tuesday’s election.

No one candidate is expected to top the 50 percent support needed

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