In their gracious concession speeches, his Democratic opponents Walter Boasso and Foster Campbell and independent John Georges also called on their supporters to rally behind Jindal.
While this sunshine-and-rainbow honeymoon will end the minute that Jindal's sworn into office, the temporary truce is welcome ' especially by my e-mail inbox. For the past four months, I've been flooded with a dizzying 10-20 campaign announcements an hour. In the final weeks leading up to the election, it all blended into a blur of LOOK AT THESE ENDORSEMENTS and JOE MISREPRESENTED MY POSITION ON HEALTH CARE and WE JUST RAISED $10,000 and THEY'RE RUNNING A DIRTY CAMPAIGN and WATCH THIS YOUTUBE VIDEO and MY OPPONENT HATES CHILDREN AND PUPPIES, until I was ready to take a sledgehammer to my computer monitor.
And that doesn't even take into account letters to the editor. Campaigns bring out some of the most, shall we say, spirited letters. One anonymous writer called The Independent "a slime bag group of radical disgusting right-wing a--h---s," while regular reader Roder Russo of Youngsville says The Independent is "not interested in facts only the typical liberal hyper filly, innuendos and lies."
There will still be plenty of those types of missives sparked by the statewide runoffs for attorney general and commissioner of agriculture and forestry, where you can take it to the bank that AG candidates Royal Alexander and Buddy Caldwell and Ag commish candidates Bob Odom and Mike Strain will be smiling for the cameras and scratching and clawing like vultures over a carcass behind the scenes. There are also runoffs in a number of local city council races and state representative races.
But it's all over in the race for the state's top spot. Like it or not, Jindal is the new leader of Louisiana.
Longtime Louisiana political analyst and demographer Elliot Stonecipher presented some interesting theories regarding Jindal's future at his recent Oct. 3 Lafayette speech as part of The Independent Weekly's Lecture Series. Stonecipher believes that for Jindal to have a real shot at meaningful ethics reform and substantive legislative changes, our new governor is going to have to show voters how the sausage is made.
Stonecipher may be onto something. In Jindal's acceptance speech, he promised: "If and when folks try to stop [ethics reform], I will call them out. If and when people try to throw in amendments designed to derail ethics reform, I will call them out."
Go for it. Name names. Point the finger at legislators who load up bills with unrelated pork and poison pills and delay the process with procedural nonsense.
That cuts both ways. Members of the Legislature, whether they're Democrat, Republican or independent, need to have the courage to stand up to Jindal and similarly call him out if they believe he's pushing legislation that would take Louisiana down the wrong path. Battles between governors and the Legislature are nothing new, but far too often it descends into rote partisan posturing. Both sides would do well to tone down the sniping and grandstanding and give voters an honest, unfiltered peek at some of the ridiculous stunts pulled behind closed doors.
How will this factor into Jindal's ability to lead? Stonecipher has another theory worth keeping in mind: one of the reasons the state Republican Party is so united behind Jindal is because the national Republican Party views Jindal as a rising star. He represents a potential national voting base that's traditionally eluded Republicans, even more so in recent years: young minorities. With that in mind, the national party won't wait too long before bringing Jindal up on the national stage ' possibly even as a vice presidential candidate on the 2012 or 2016 ticket.
Using Stonecipher's hypothesis, Jindal can make some bold moves and fail. If his major policy initiatives are thwarted by the Democratic-majority Legislature, the national party can hold Jindal up as a candidate who vigorously tried to enact change but was derailed by partisan politics. If he succeeds, he'll have a positive track record to run on, and the national party won't risk the potential damage from any Jindal missteps in a second four-year term.
In either scenario, Jindal's likely a one-term governor. Here's hoping he makes the most of it.
The fight to clean up Lafayette Parish could get some added ammunition with two ordinances up for votes Tuesday by the City-Parish Council targeting litter-bugs.
By striking a deal to lessen the blow of health insurance changes on state workers, school employees and retirees, Gov. Bobby Jindal's administration lowered the volume of criticism but gave itself and local school boards a new budget headache.
With the airport tax coming up for a parishwide vote in about a week, the Broussard City Council and its mayor have come out in support of the proposal.
Protesters rallied peacefully in several Louisiana cities in the wake of the Missouri grand jury decision not to indict a police officer in the fatal shooting of Michal Brown.
US cities bidding on Olympics; Guard prevents more Ferguson riots; storm threatens travel and more national and international news for Wednesday, November 26, 2014.
Wednesday's Blogs from the Bog!
The U.S. rep billed LSU for work allegedly performed on the same days Congress voted on major legislation and held important committee hearings on energy and the ACA.
Abysmally low participation by the public has prompted the council to scuttle the 2014 survey with plans to simplify it and try again next year.
The village now says the ordinance will likely be overturned and authorities will more vigorously enforce existing leash laws.
Bill Cassidy cast an early ballot Tuesday, seeking to draw renewed attention to a race that has fallen off newspaper front pages and away from people's minds as they plan holiday meals and shopping schedules.
Battered all night by Baltimore's relentless pass rush, Drew Brees could feel his protection collapsing and Terrell Suggs getting ahold of him as he urgently unloaded a pass to the right flat toward tight end Jimmy Graham.
After a convincing defeat at the polls on Nov. 4, Earl “Nickey” Picard has decided to let bygones be bygones with his former right-hand man Brian Pope, announcing his support for his former employee’s runoff bid to become Lafayette’s next city marshal.
Saturday the athletic department did everything possible to ensure the 2014 Ragin’ Cajun seniors remembered fondly their last home game. Rain and lightning never arrived but turbulence did in the form of the Appalachian State Mountaineers.
Even stranger than the Republican Party’s decision to hold a “unity rally” earlier this month for Congressman Bill Cassidy in a Baton Rouge bar, Huey’s Bar, was the fact that the establishment was named after Louisiana’s most famous Democrat.
Bar Code is not a gay bar.
After failing to pass a medical marijuana bill last year, state Sen. Fred Mills, R-Parks, is telling supporters he will return in 2015 with legislation that focuses on different applications like oils and pills.
Voters, obviously, are not yet tuned into the 2015 ballot, despite the intriguing races it will host.
By now, the story of how longtime LSU coach Dale Brown discovered Shaquille O'Neal has been told many times: Brown happened upon a massive 13-year-old at an army base in Germany, stayed in touch with him and eventually became like a second father.
Fate simply wasn't ready to give the New Orleans Saints a break from longtime nemesis Steve Smith.
Lafayette Police have had a busy day.
Gov. Bobby Jindal's administration will use $130 million in patchwork financing from a tax amnesty program, insurance settlement, uninsured motorist penalties and other excess funds to close most of the state's midyear budget deficit.
Democratic U.S. Sen. Mary Landrieu said she disagrees with President Barack Obama's actions on immigration, hoping the latest controversy doesn't worsen her campaign difficulties.
Gay-rights advocates challenging Louisiana's same-sex marriage ban announced Thursday that they have asked the U.S. Supreme Court to review their case before it is heard by a federal appeals court.
Thinking himself the “son of God,” the man charged with the 2013 killing of an officer of the Chitimacha Tribal Police will not stand trial following a ruling Thursday on his mental competency.
Either Saints coach Sean Payton doesn't want to tip Baltimore off as to who'll start in New Orleans' secondary on Monday night, or he really doesn't know yet.