Report from Louisiana: The State of the Governor’s Race

By:  Pat Austin SHREVEPORT – The Louisiana governor’s race is beginning to take shape and from where I’m sitting, it looks like a piece of cake for the incumbent, John Bel Edwards. The Advocate has a good run-down of who is in and who is out at this point, and when you look at who … Continue reading Report from Louisiana: The State of the Governor’s Race

Report from Louisiana: John Bel Edwards is Prepping for Re-Election

By:  Pat Austin SHREVEPORT – It is less than a year until Louisiana’s next gubernatorial election and current governor, John Bel Edwards, is getting his ducks in a row. When election day comes in October 2019, Edwards will be able to tell voters that he has added 500,000 new government dependents to the Medicaid rolls, … Continue reading Report from Louisiana: John Bel Edwards is Prepping for Re-Election

Report from Louisiana: What Fiscal Cliff? There Was a Fiscal Cliff?

By:  Pat Austin SHREVEPORT – Normally, news of a $300 million surplus at the end of the State’s fiscal year would be good news, but here in Louisiana it is prompting questions and accusations amongst the political talking heads. All summer long Louisiana residents were pummeled with news that our budget was facing a terrible … Continue reading Report from Louisiana: What Fiscal Cliff? There Was a Fiscal Cliff?

Report from Louisiana: Random Thoughts

By:  Pat Austin SHREVEPORT – Some random thoughts this week: Book Reviews:  I’ve finished reading two books this week: What the Dog Knows by Cat Warren, and Educated by Tara Westover.  Both have been books that leave what I call a book-hangover, which is to say that they were both so good that it’s been … Continue reading Report from Louisiana: Random Thoughts

Report from Louisiana: Controversial Criminal Justice Reform

By:  Pat Austin SHREVEPOT -- Last week Caddo Parish Sheriff Steve Prator visited with Erin McCarty and Robert J. Wright on our local 710 KEEL radio about Governor John Bel Edwards touted Criminal Justice Reform. The bipartisan legislation revamping the way Louisiana deals with criminals and crime was passed in 2017 in an attempt to … Continue reading Report from Louisiana: Controversial Criminal Justice Reform

Report from Louisiana: Yet Another Special Session

By:  Pat Austin SHREVEPORT – Louisiana is facing a $650 million dollar fiscal cliff and two previous special legislative sessions have failed to solve the dilemma, and so special session number three begins today, at a cost of about $60,000 per day. Throughout this crisis the normal groups have been targeted and threatened for extinction: … Continue reading Report from Louisiana: Yet Another Special Session

Report from Louisiana: Early Prison Release #fail

By:  Pat Austin SHREVEPORT --  Well, that didn’t take long. Tyrone White, a convicted car burglar who was released early under Louisiana’s new free-the-criminals criminal justice overall, has been re-arrested.  White was out of jail only five days before he picked up a gun and robbed a construction worker in Kenner, Louisiana.  He is now … Continue reading Report from Louisiana: Early Prison Release #fail

Report from Louisiana: The Edwards/Graves Feud Heats Up

By:  Pat Austin SHREVEPORT – The feud between Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards and Baton Rouge Representative Garrett Graves over the slow response of Louisiana in flood recovery efforts escalated last week when the Edwards camp accused Rep. Graves of spreading false information about the release of federal money given to the state. Friday, Rep. … Continue reading Report from Louisiana: The Edwards/Graves Feud Heats Up

Report from Louisiana: “It Started to Rain…”

By:  Pat Austin SHREVEPORT  -- South Louisiana is flooding.  You may have heard about it on the news.  It’s really bad.  In a press conference Sunday morning, Governor John Bel Edwards said it is “plenty bad.” Many homes that have never taken on water before have flooded with this storm and many of those people … Continue reading Report from Louisiana: “It Started to Rain…”

Report from Louisiana: Edwards Breaks Promise to Support School Choice

By:  Pat Austin SHREVEPORT – Can I say “I told you so” now? Louisiana elected John Bel Edwards in the last gubernatorial election because so many voters just couldn’t stomach David Vitter any longer; standing in judgment of Vitter’s decades-old moral lapse (one which his wife had long since forgiven), enough Louisiana Republicans crossed lines … Continue reading Report from Louisiana: Edwards Breaks Promise to Support School Choice

Maybe he likes Omelettes

By: Pat Austin SHREVEPORT – As Louisiana struggles to keep the lights on in the state and as legislators continue to make cuts and raise taxes as they try to balance the budget, what most Louisiana residents were upset about last week was the luxury chicken coop Governor John Bel Edwards has had built (with … Continue reading Maybe he likes Omelettes

Random Notes from Louisiana

By:  Pat Austin SHREVEPORT – Some random observations from way down South this week. Technically, Donald Trump won Louisiana in the primary Saturday, but my friends at The Hayride make the case that the true winner was Ted Cruz.  If you look at the Trump – Cruz gap and compare early voting to the results … Continue reading Random Notes from Louisiana

Report From Louisiana: The Lights are Still On

By:  Pat Austin SHREVEPORT – We are more than halfway through the legislative special session in Baton Rouge meant to solve the staggering $900 million state budget deficit and there does not appear to be any clear or painless way to solve the crisis. You might remember a couple of weeks ago when I reported … Continue reading Report From Louisiana: The Lights are Still On

Report from Louisiana: Crisis!

By:  Pat Austin SHREVEPORT – When news broke this past Thursday that John Bel Edwards had halted all payments to the enormously popular TOPS college scholarship program, you could feel the panic and desperation throughout the state.  Thursday afternoon, February 11, word came down about the program via NOLA: Gov. John Bel Edwards' budget chief, … Continue reading Report from Louisiana: Crisis!

Governor John Bel Edwards is off to a Rocky Start

By:  Pat Austin SHREVEPORT – It would seem that Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards is off to a rather rocky start as he goes up against the majority Republican Legislature. It appears that the Republicans aren’t going to make life easy for Edwards. On the campaign trail, Edwards wrapped himself in moderate clothes and won … Continue reading Governor John Bel Edwards is off to a Rocky Start

Report from Louisiana: John Bel Edwards is *gasp* Acting Like a Democrat!

By: Pat Austin SHREVEPORT – He’s not even been inaugurated yet and John Bel Edwards appears to be giving the shaft to his supporters and waffling on his promise to get rid of state superintendent of education, John White. Many Republican voters eschewed David Vitter in the most recent gubernatorial election because, well, they just … Continue reading Report from Louisiana: John Bel Edwards is *gasp* Acting Like a Democrat!

Report from Louisiana: A $750 Million Budget Shortfall Will be First Problem for New Governor, Almost

By: Pat Austin SHREVEPORT – In just over a week, John Bel Edwards will take over the gubernatorial reins from Governor Bobby Jindal in what is being called a “low key” inaugural event. In the face of budget woes that are reportedly worse than anticipated, Edwards is keeping things simple on January 11. The inaugural … Continue reading Report from Louisiana: A $750 Million Budget Shortfall Will be First Problem for New Governor, Almost

Raising the Minimum Wage, Expanding Medicaid, and Re-instating SNAP: John Bel Edwards Prepares to Take Office

By:  Pat Austin SHREVEPORT --  Governor-elect John Bel Edwards has declared that Louisiana has given him a mandate to do what he wants, what he promised during the campaign, and he intends to govern just that way.  Among his first steps, as I outlined last week, will be working to enact the Medicaid expansion that … Continue reading Raising the Minimum Wage, Expanding Medicaid, and Re-instating SNAP: John Bel Edwards Prepares to Take Office