– Yesterday evening Governor Bobby Jindal spoke with Congressman Jeff Landry and confirmed with Congressman Landry that he has not endorsed the Kostelka Congressional redistricting plan. This is in contrast to news reports assuming otherwise.
“The Governor and I spoke and he assured me that he is not endorsing the Kostelka redistricting plan,” said Jeff Landry.
The Kostelka plan has raised serious questions, most importantly the splitting of Terrebonne and Lafourche Parishes. Local leaders from Terrebonne and Lafourche have spoken out strongly in favor of keeping the Parishes together. In addition, the two Parishes had the largest number of concerned citizens at their regional redistricting hearings than in any other location in the state.
Governor Jindal has stated he prefers two north Louisiana districts. The Kostelka plan does this - but also splits Terrebonne and Lafourche..
“The Governor also understands the concerns of the local people who do not want Terrebonne and Lafourche split. It is a concern I share and something I pledged to oppose during my campaign last year,” said Congressman Landry.
However, in an article published yesterday in the Monroe News Star, there was a different side of this story:
Gov. Bobby Jindal said Monday he will actively support a congressional map retaining two districts in northern Louisiana that includes Monroe as one population hub and Shreveport as the other.
"It makes sense for north Louisiana to have two districts," Jindal said in an interview with The News-Star before he spoke here during a Catahoula Parish town hall meeting. "Both are important communities with their own interests."
The current 5th Congressional District also includes Alexandria as a population center.
When asked if his administration is lobbying lawmakers to support the concept, he said yes.
Also in the News Star story:
Alexander and other congressmen are expected to testify before Kostelka's committee Tuesday.
"That's what the governor has consistently told me, and I'm glad he's taken that position," Alexander said. "It's worked well so far. North Louisiana is better represented by two members of congress than one."
After receiving the email from the Landry campaign, I asked Jindal’s press secretary, Kyle Plotkin whether the governor was in fact supporting the plan or not. I will update you when I receive Plotkin’s response.
In the meantime, you can bet the boot of Louisiana that plenty of people throughout Louisiana are confused and quite a number of them will be angry depending upon what spot on Louisiana's version of the Mason-Dixon line they might be standing. .
Below is a comment on one of our Buzzbacks...Do you agree or disagree?
Since over the last 40 years, North LA has suffered far more than south La at the hands of criminals and buffoons (Fast Eddie and 24-Hour Kate come quickly to mind), decent people should not want to restart that unwarranted (criminal) neglect of North LA.
It is well past time for the past imbalance in appropriations/representation to be corrected. With the worst roads, worst schools, and worst record of unemployment, the residents of North LA have only asked for "FAIR TREATMENT". Unfortunately, people in south La don't seem to be able to hear much above I-10 and NOTHING above I-20.
Thank goodness we now have a Governor who actually knows that Union Parish is not part of Arkansas, that NELA is just as important as any other part of this state, and that what MIGHT be good for NOLA bears little to no benefit for North LA.
As for Mr. Landry and Mr. Boustany, they should be team players, understand that the Governor is now supporting Senator Kostelka's plan, and flip a coin on who accepts the consolation prize that is likely awaiting one of them.
BTW, the hurricane argument is really lame. North La has been forced over and over again to pay for those disasters in direct taxes, lost appropriations, and unappreciated charity. In fact, thanks to south Louisiana politicians, North La residents are being forced to pay for the repairs of electrical utilities in south La still today.
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