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.”
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DEC 20 The Robertson family is playing hardball in their dispute with A&E, the network that airs the wildly profitable "reality" show about their family, Duck Dynasty. Patriarch Phil Robertson was suspended by the network after GQ printed an interview with him that contained his (unedited) comments about gay and black folks. Here's a link to their statement, in which they say they can't imagine the show without papa and announcing that they are in negotiations with A&E about the future of the show.
DEC 20 Blogger Robert Mann (also a journalism prof at LSU and thus an authority on the First Amendment) says something in this post of which a lot of Fox News anchors and internet trolls should take heed: the Constitution says you have freedom of speech. It does not say you can't face consequences for what you say. He also takes a look at what our governor has to say -- and ole Bobby had to drag Miley Cyrus into it.
DEC 20 Blogger Tom Aswell says Governor Bobby Jindal has now had more to say about the comments a "reality" star made about gay and black people than he has had to say about the problems in his own voucher program or the sinkhole in Bayou Corne. In fact, Tom points out, Bobby's all over the Phil Robertson "issue" like "a duck on a June bug."
DEC 20 Here's an interesting post from blogger Katie East in DIG Magazine about celebrity passings. She understands why so many would be sad because of Mandela's passing -- he was an international figure, a political figure, an activist. But there is similar wailing following the passing of people who may not have had the same impact, she says -- like the guy who starred in the Fast and Furious movies. She wants to know: why is that?
DEC 20 Columnist James Gill writes about Louisiana's embattled voucher program in this post. Just because a child attends a private school does not mean he's going to get a good education, Gill writes. Gov. Jindal likes to say the program helps kids get a great education, but whether it does that is open to "considerable doubt," Gill writes.
DEC 20 Gambit's Clancy DuBos writes about the NOLA mayor's race in this post. For a while, it was assumed that it would be a quiet one, given the amount of money Mitch has in the bank. But at the last minute, a (possibly) formidable candidate threw his hat in the ring. The question is, Clancy says, why?
DEC 20 In Louisiana's education system, the state takes over a school that is designated as "failing." The assumption is, that's a good thing and will produce improvement. But is that the case? Blogger Mike Deshotels takes a look at how takeovers perform in one area of testing, the ACT.
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