On Friday, the Louisiana League of Women Voters of Baton Rouge hosted one hell of a debate for the lieutenant governor’s race. Secretary of State Jay Dardenne, the hometown favorite and Republican contender, faced off against political novice Caroline Fayard, a New Orleans Democrat.
While the candidates were allowed to address each other — there were quite a few zingers — a panel of journalists also leaned on Dardenne and Fayard, including in rounds of rapid-fire questions. Here’s a look at the candidates’ just-as-rapid questions.
Q.) If you lose, will you run again? J.D.) “If I lose, I’ll run for (re-election as) secretary of state next year.” C.F.) “It depends on the mood of the state.”
Q.) If you could change one thing about politics, what would it be? J.D.) “The failure of government to do everything for everybody.” C.F.) “I would change the partisan nature of politics.”
Q.) What would you say about the federal health care overhaul? J.D.) “It’s a disaster.” C.F.) “It’s a net positive for Louisiana.”
Q.) Do you think global warming should be a serious concern for Louisiana? J.D.) “I think it’s an issue that’s important not only for the state, but everywhere.” C.F.) “Yes. It’s something we need to put our attention to.”
Q.) How would you grade Gov. Bobby Jindal’s Performance? J.D.) “B+.” C.F.) “B.”
Q.) How would you grade President Barack Obama’s performance? J.D.) “F.” C.F.) “B+.”
Q.) Which current congressman best represents Louisiana? J.D.) “My congressman, (Baton Rouge Republican) Bill Cassidy.” C.F.) “Rep. Charlie Melancon, a Democrat form Napoleonville.”
Q.) Who is one of your favorite Louisiana politicians from years gone by? J.D.) “Former Congressman Henson Moore of Baton Rouge, who, from 1975 to 1987, was only the second Republican to represent Louisiana in the U.S. House since Reconstruction.” C.F.) “Former U.S. Sen. John Breaux, a Democrat from Crowley.”
Q.) Would you be in favor of a pardon for former Gov. Edwin Edwards? J.D.) “No.” C.F.) “I would defer to the board of pardons.”
JUNE 19 Former Saint Steve Gleason, who is paralyzed by ALS, released a statement Tuesday in response to the Atlanta radio station's skit making fun of him and the disease, this Picayune post reports. What did he say? He said he'd accepted the apology of the DJs who did it, notes that at least the incident has got people talking about ALS, and asks anyone who is burning to take action about it to do so -- by helping him fight ALS.
JUNE 19 Blogger Ian McGibboney takes a look at the Gleason incident in this post. He makes a good argument about the difference between having free speech and being free from consequences for your speech (which none of us is). He also admits that many of us got upset before we listened to the skit -- but lets us know that the reality is far worse than we can imagine. It was the incredibly bad judgment, even more than the actual speech, that probably got those DJs fired, he opines.
JUNE 19 Washington Post blogger Aaron Blake writes about Sen. Guillory's switch to the GOP in this post. He writes what most political watchers in Louisiana know: Guillory was a Republican before he decided to run for the senate seat in a mostly-D St. Landry district, and has switched back now that he plans to run for Lt. Gov. in a mostly-R state. But how come Blake missed Guillory's appearance on a TLC pageant show? Now that is a video we'd like to see. (Again).
JUNE 19 Here's another Washington Post blog post about a Louisiana politician, and it's just plain scathing. Ezra Klein says Jindal's Politico post was "insulting" to the intelligence of voters, and adds that Jindal is personifying the "stupid" he's railed against, by being an "elite" who convinces GOP activists of "things that aren't true." Me-ow.
JUNE 19 Here's Gov. Jindal's post in Politico, in which he asks the GOP to get over losing to Obama (again) and stop "the bedwetting." (Uh, what?) He gives his Republican buddies what is probably a nerd's idea of a coach's motivational talk, which starts with a list of accomplishments that they can't seem to exploit and ending with an absurd description of liberals that sounds like a character treatment for a Fox "News" movie scripted by Gordon Liddy. Sure, he's preaching to the choir, but even the choir's not this gullible.
JUNE 19 Lamar Parmentel read Gov. Jindal's post on Politico, but thinks it was so dumb it probably was published in the wrong paper. This post by Lamar on the Daily Kingfish opines that possibly Jindal's post was destined for the Onion -- because the governor couldn't possibly be serious here. If you listen closely, you can hear the staff of the Kingfish giggling.
JUNE 19 Blogger Robert Mann posts from Turkey, a country he has visited several times in the past few years. Mann gives an interesting overview of the current political and societal climate of the country, which -- if you're living under a rock and don't know -- is experiencing protests and turmoil these days. Mann promises to post as much as he can during his trip, which should be fascinating reading.
JUNE 19 Blogger CB Forgotston says the legislature is keeping the vicious cycle going with its funding of new buildings for the community college/technical college system. Universities across the state need maintenance and improvement on existing buildings, and the solution is to build new buildings at other schools? By the time the bonds are paid off, those buildings will be falling down, too, CB says.
Frank’s Casing Crew, now doing business as Frank’s International, will make its final appearance on ABiz’s list of the Top 50 Privately Held Companies in Acadiana this year, and once again it will likely be at the top with more than $1 billion in annual revenues. The 75-year-old company specializing in tubular fabrication and installation services to the oil and gas industry plans to offer shares of its stock to the public for the first time.
The defeat, or rather highjacking of House Bill 420 in the final days of this year's Legislative Session, say Reps. Vincent Pierre and Terry Landry, is the result of the propaganda spread by one unidentified local media outlet and an unnamed former state Representative, but nothing to do with the original legislation's lack of checks, balances or details.
He’s a singer. A songwriter. A piano man. A family man. He’s even got his own Wikipedia entry. He’s David Egan. And he knows ancient secrets about the monolithic stones of Stonehenge that he’s not willing to share.