Two weeks after the tumultuous annual legislative session was laid to rest, Gov. Bobby Jindal’s retaliatory reputation lives on: With the stroke of his veto pen, Jindal on Friday stripped a half-million dollars from the budget of state Treasurer John Kennedy, an outspoken Jindal critic, and $2 million in marketing money from Lt. Gov. Jay Dardenne’s office.
According to The Advocate
, the governor’s veto message described the $511,279 cut to Kennedy’s office as a way to “streamline” his department, a clever jab considering that Kennedy joined a bloc of state reps and other elected officials in protesting Jindal’s use of one-time money to plug budget holes for the upcoming fiscal year. Much of what Kennedy had to say during the session was regurgitated from his stint on the state’s Commission for Streamlining Government. Ouch.
Dardenne, meanwhile, complained during budget talks about his office not receiving enough money for advertising and tourism promotions, specifically pointing to the cost his office will incur in promoting Super Bowl XLVII in New Orleans. Jindal writes in his veto message that the $2 million in marketing money
for Dardenne’s office “exceeded available revenue,” The Advocate reports.
The governor’s veto messages add to a lengthy list of department heads who were fired in recent months for not toeing the Jindal line, while dissenters in the Legislature were ousted from leadership positions for voting against Jindal-backed bills. Read more on Jindal’s latest legislative casualty, state Rep. Jim Morris, here
Jindal was unavailable for comment, but his spokesman Kyle Plotkin tells the paper that the veto messages speak for themselves.