BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards and his leading Republican opponent Ralph Abraham each have picked up high-profile endorsements.

Abraham, a third-term congressman, won the support Wednesday of U.S. Rep. Clay Higgins. Higgins is the first Republican member of Louisiana's congressional delegation to choose a favorite between Abraham and the race's other major GOP contender, businessman Eddie Rispone.

Abraham has received several new announcements of support from Republican elected officials this week. Rispone has faced GOP backlash after launching a TV attack ad against Abraham.

Edwards again won the backing of the Louisiana Sheriffs' Association, which supported him in 2015. The Democratic governor comes from a family with four generations of sheriffs. His brother currently is sheriff in Tangipahoa Parish.

The first debate ahead of the Oct. 12 election is Thursday.