[Editor's Note: After this story went to press, The INDsider was able to confirm, through a source close to LeBlanc, that LeBlanc is registered as an independent. The story now reflects this new information.]
Former state Rep. Jerry Luke LeBlanc is ready to get back into politics. Sources tell the INDsider LeBlanc, an independent, plans to run for term-limited state Sen. Mike Michot’s District 23 seat this fall, setting up what could be a tough race against state Rep. Page Cortez.
LeBlanc currently serves as vice president for administration and finance at UL Lafayette. He resigned from the Legislature in 2004 to serve as former Gov. Kathleen Blanco’s commissioner of administration. LeBlanc was a five-term state rep from Lafayette and is the son of a former state representative. He also worked as a real estate appraiser during his time in the Legislature.
Michot’s seat is also being sought by Cortez, a Lafayette Republican in his first term representing House District 43. Although Cortez has not formally announced for the seat, he has already held fundraisers in anticipation of a run and his intention to seek the seat is well established in Lafayette political circles. Reached via text message Thursday morning and asked if LeBlanc’s pending candidacy would have any effect on his plans, Cortez replied, “Not at all.”
It’s unclear if LeBlanc, widely regarded as a seasoned and savvy campaigner, would have to resign his post at UL if his bid for Michot’s seat is successful. He makes $215,000 a year at the university.
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JUL 24 This post on the Red Stick Blog reveals nine facts about Mike the Tiger, the LSU mascot who turns nine this week. That's interesting and all, but the best part of the post is the video of Mike playing around with a visitor, just like any other kitty. A massive, deadly, 400-pound, roaring kitty.
JUL 24 DIG Baton Rouge tells us about a local chef who makes an appearance on one of the Food Network's inexplicably stupid competition shows, Cutthroat Kitchen. The chef, who also appeared on Master Chef, talks here about Cajun and Creole cuisine and its place in American food.
JUL 24 Political consultants who switched candidates in midstream to work with Jindal buddy Garret Graves on his Congressional campaign are being sued by their former employer, the Picayune tells us in this post. Among the allegations? The firm started working for Graves before they left his opponent's campaign.
JUL 24 The recent articles about a study that found America's happiest cities are here in Louisiana have produced some raised eyebrows among those who have actually been to Shreveport and Baton Rouge. But the Today show did some research, and produced this article which talks about stuff that doesn't really represent those two cities. Are we still going with the drunk, fat and stupid brand?
JUL 24 Here's a story on Huffington Post that explores the connection between Gov. Bobby Jindal and the charter school business that sued him Tuesday over Common Core. The head of that business is recalling all the good stuff Bobby had to say about the curriculum - you know, back when it was cool to like it.
JUL 24 Blogger CB Forgotston has found another problem with the 11th hour bill that tacked $30K onto State Police Commander Mike Edmonson's annual retirement check. The move was missing a financial assessment that's required by statute. This is a red flag that was missed, CB says. You think?
JUL 24 Blogger Mike Deshotels prints a statement from three BESE members who are supporting the legislators who are suing the governor over the Common Core mess. He adds his own personal comment, as well.
JUL 24 The Lens is hosting a panel discussion on the cost of coastal restoration, and who should pay for it, next month in NOLA. It is planned to be a discussion of the realities of the coastal restoration master plan and its current funding, as well as what the future holds.
JUL 23 Blogger Stephen Sabludowsky is attempting to clear away some of the smoke that Bobby Jindal's been blowing about our economy. The press releases and "presidential campaign claims" of Jindal notwithstanding, the outlook is not that rosy, Sabludowsky says. He's got some comment here from the head of GNO Inc. as well.
JUL 23 This post on Mashable says Louisiana is poised to be the next (and better) Hollywood. Sure, blogger Travis Andrews is talking Louisiana in general, but the focus really is on New Orleans. And that's fine, because if NOLA and Hollywood get into a ambiance/food/style/crazy contest, we like NOLA's chances.
JUL 23 Here's New York Magazine's profile of Edwin Edwards, a well-written, thoughtful (and still unvarnished) look at Louisiana's most famous felon. There's a lot of history, but author Mark Jacobson doesn't get bogged down in pedantic rehashes here. It's a really good read.
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