Raymond Edward Garofalo, Jr., known as Ray Garofalo (born September 1958), is a lawyer and commercial developer from St. Bernard Parish, Louisiana, who is a Republican member of the Louisiana House of Representatives from District 103, which encompasses primarily St. Bernard Parish and four precincts each from Orleans and Plaquemines parishes. Garofalo is a graduate of the Roman Catholic Holy Cross High School,Loyola University New Orleans and Loyola University New Orleans College of Law. Garofalo resides with his wife, the former Joan Seibert, in Meraux, a census-designated place in St. Bernard Parish. Garofalo won the state House position in the general election held on November 19, 2011, when he defeated the Democrat, Chad Lauga, 7,153 (53.3 percent) to 6,262 (46.7 percent). The incumbent Democrat Reed S. Henderson did not seek reelection. Garofalo in his first term was assigned to the House (1) Civil Law and Procedure, (2) Judiciary, and (3) Natural Resources and Environment committees. The Louisiana Association of Business and Industry rated Garofalo 89 percent, with a 78 percent score for the 2013 session alone. In the 2012, session Garofalo was the subject of an ultimately unsuccessful recall instigated by disgruntled professional educators in his district who object to his conservative House votes on issues related to school vouchers and education reform which had been popular positions shown in public opinion polls during the 2011 election period.
Support for the Marriage and Conscience Act
On May 19, 2015, Garofalo was the only other member of the House Civil Law and Procedure Committee to support the proposed Marriage and Conscience Act, authored by Republican Representative Mike Johnson of Bossier Parish and strongly supported by the conservative Louisiana Family Forum. Governor Bobby Jindal, who supported the legislation, then issued an executive order to implement the measure. Johnson said that he will in 2016, if he is reelected, re-introduce the measure because he prefers a statutory law to address the issue. Johnson explained that the measure is designed to block the state government from pulling licenses or tax benefits from a company because of the owner's counter view of same-sex marriage. Four Republicans voted to table the bill, Nancy Landry of Lafayette, Gregory A. Miller of Norco, Mike "Pete" Huval of Breaux Bridge, and Clay Schexnayder of Gonzales, who voted to table on a 10-2 vote. Among Democrats who opposed the measure were committee chairman Neil Abramson and Joseph Bouie, Jr., both of New Orleans, Patrick O. Jefferson of Arcadia, and Alfred C. Williams of Baton Rouge, who died three months later.
Though he led a four-candidate field in the October 24, 2015 primary election for the state House, Garofalo fell short of outright victory and faced a runoff election on November 21. In the primary, he polled 4,588 votes (39.2 percent). The Democrat Casey Hunnicutt finished second with 2,597 votes (22.2 percent). Two other candidates, Democrat Leola Anderson and Republican George Cavignac, received 2,275 (19.4 percent) and 1,244 (19.2 percent), respectively.
Garofalo subsequently won the general election over Hunnicutt, 6,562 (51.9 percent) to 6,079 (48.1 percent).