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.
If all 44 projects are approved, about $300 million would remain in the fund set up as a down payment to help the Gulf.
Last week, the Saints gave up 429 yards to Seattle, second most in a game this season.
Here's your daily look at late-breaking national and international news, upcoming events and the stories that will be talked about Friday, December 06, 2013
Since Anthony Jennings and Brooks Haack were not expected to contribute until next year at the earliest, it seemed like a sneak peek at hidden Christmas gifts.
Louisiana National Guard personnel seeking benefits for same-sex spouses will have an easier time filing the requests, despite a state refusal to let its workers process the paperwork.
Panthers coach Ron Rivera sees one potential flaw with his team's stellar defensive play so far this season. "Apparently we like to bite on the double moves," Rivera said.
Computer hackers may have gained access to the personal information of thousands of Louisiana residents who use debit cards issued by JPMorgan Chase for three state agencies, authorities said Wednesday.
Jim Purcell, who has been in the job since February 2011, notified the Board of Regents about his decision at its monthly meeting.
Hushed plans for a commercial development along the Louisiana Avenue portion of the Holy Rosary campus put the future of longtime tenant EarthShare Gardens in jeopardy.
If a recent advertisement in The Daily Advertiser is any indication, speculation the local daily will be implementing the “Butterfly Project” could be more of a reality than the Gannett-owned paper’s top execs are willing to admit.
Mettenberger injured his left knee while unloading a 32-yard completion in the fourth quarter of No. 14 LSU's 31-27 victory over Arkansas last Friday, and LSU coach Les Miles confirmed the severity of the injury on Wednesday.
An ordinance to phase out a 2 percent rebate to Lafayette merchants for collecting and remitting on time sales taxes cleared the City-Parish Council by a 6-3 vote.
Louisianans are the fourth most likely to use profanity yet also the fourth most likely to be courteous. So, please, just kiss my a** ... if it’s not too much trouble.
The state Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority voted Tuesday to authorize two lawsuits against the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.
A long night on the field in Seattle got even worse off of it, and now the Saints are operating on a compressed time-frame as they brace for surging Carolina with first place in the NFC South at stake.
Public school letter grades, teacher evaluations and student promotion won't be affected by Louisiana's shift to more rigorous educational standards for two years, the state's top school board decided Tuesday.
Vitter told The Associated Press that he is sending an email to supporters Wednesday and is in discussions with his family about the possibility.
The Ragin' Cajuns go for New Orleans Bowl three-peat, this time against the Tulane Green Wave, which is making its first postseason appearance since the Hawaii Bowl in 2002.
Louisiana has joined four other states in filing a so-called “friend of the court” brief in support of Mississippi’s lawsuit against the federal government over new flood insurance rates set to go into effect.
Kerry Wayne Bertrand was charged Monday for the alleged killing of his stepdaughter, Skylar Lee Credeur, a UL Lafayette chemistry major found dead in the bathtub of her family home in August.
Louisiana's state school board is considering a two-year delay for some consequences tied to the phase-in of more rigorous educational standards, called Common Core, at public schools.
The most anticipated game in the NFC this season was a laugher.
The attorneys for Busted in Acadiana administrator Chris Hebert got an extra 2.5 months Monday to prepare for their client’s felony trial, marking the third time the case has been delayed this year.
In an effort to ease tensions, Lafayette Parish Superintendent of Schools Dr. Pat Cooper is calling for board approval of two day-long workshops: one to address lingering questions caused by Act 1 of the 2012 Legislature, and a session focused on mending the tattered relationship between the board and administration.
Lafayette has so much going for it, and so much yet to do.