Louisiana elected sixty-eight Republicans as State Representatives last year. Thirty-five House members are Democrats and two are independent.
The Republican Representatives’ caucus met and named a conservative Republican to become Speaker of the House by a margin of two-to-one. Democrat Governor Edwards wants to help the Pelosi/San Francisco Democrats, spend more money, raise taxes, stop insurance reform, let sexually-confused men use women’s bathrooms, etc., etc.
Therefore Edwards did not want the Republican-picked conservative for Speaker of the House. Edwards dealt to deliver all House Democrats to support a more pliable Republican for Speaker. After that, one-third of Republican Representatives joined the solid Democrat bloc to elect the Republican that Edwards wanted as Speaker.
An opportunity to begin moving Louisiana off the bottom of nearly every indicator was wasted. Louisiana will stay on the Huey Longist political path we have been on since 1928. According to his inauguration speech Edwards plans to keep doing the same old, same old. Jobs and people will continue to flee Louisiana, the Sick State of the South.
You may ask, what difference does it make who the House Speaker is, or how he was selected. This ain’t bean bag. It’s politics.
This bargain with the enemy will turn over powerful positions in the House to Edwards’s far-left Democrat cronies. The new Speaker, as the Governor wishes, will name Democrats to chairmanships and control of all major House committees that the Governor wants to own.
The Republicans who lined up with Edwards will get a few “taters.” The forty-five conservative Republicans who fought for a more conservative Speaker will be relegated to performing as a side-show to actual law-making. Edwards’s Speaker will assign bills to Edwards’s preferred committees to be acted upon as the governor instructs, either to pass or kill.
Real auto insurance reform is likely to be dead on arrival, or watered down to suit Edwards and his billboard lawyer accomplices.
His expanded Medicaid will bloat further. It already gives “free” Medicaid insurance to hundreds of people making over $100,000 per year. Edwards’s Expanded Medicaid will cost Louisiana taxpayers over 2.4 billion dollars by the end of his reign.
Louisiana’s cost of that handout will double by 2022. Twenty-two percent of Louisiana’s own tax revenue already goes to Medicaid, sixth highest ratio in America.
Edwards, a typical Democrat, thinks spending more money and higher taxes equal good government. He lusts to spend tax money before the state gets it. The new nominal-Republican Speaker makes that objective easier to reach.
The House Speaker is part of the Revenue Estimating Committee which has to agree unanimously if tax revenue is going to be spent before it comes in. That committee meets Friday and the new Speaker is likely to allow the governor to spend pie-in-the-sky money.
Probably, the most important fact is that Legislative and Congressional districts will be redrawn within two years. Edwards and the Democrats, with their obligated Speaker, have a golden opportunity to remove North Louisiana’s conservative Republican Congressman and turn that seat over to the far-left national Democrats.
This realignment will be handled by Edwards’s preferred House committee. That group will redraw state legislative boundaries to put more liberals into state government.
Then they will draft and fight for an Edwards plan to flip a Republican Congressional seat to the national Looney-Left Democrats, keeping Nancy Pelosi in control of the U S House of Representatives. America, Louisiana and North Louisiana will be the losers.
Gerald Holland lives in Springhill.