Tuesday, 09 August 2011 11:22
Pinsonat On Louisiana Elections, Landrieu, Edwards, US Credit Ratings, Jindal, Tea Party, More
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With the U.S. debt and credit rating crises playing out on the national stage and with Louisiana elections taking shape this fall, Bayoubuzz turned to Louisiana political poster, Bernie Pinsonat of Southern Media And Opinion Research (SMOR) to take the room temperature of the Louisiana politics, elections, Mary Landrieu, the national debt issues, President Obama, Governor Jindal, the Tea Party, Edwin Edwards and other issues.


  How do you think these recent downgrades of US credit and other agencies and (such as Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac) will affect Louisiana politics and Louisiana elections?  Who will win and who will lose?

Probably the only affect will be the higher cost of borrowing by state and local governments. Of course home owners and credit card users will also pay more to credit institutions. Unfortunately banks will use this credit downgrade to make money off of on any and all services they provide to customers. 

 Recently, Edwin Edwards said that Democrats were having problems raising money as Democrats and that was part of the reason the political switching was occurring but that in reality the politicians have not changed—do you think there are any truths to his comments?

Democrats are having trouble raising money because small businesses are no longer tolerating the Democratic Party’s alliance with trial lawyers and unions. Some democrats who are incumbents can raise money from local small businesses. However, the amount of money available to his republican challenger is so much more that democrats throw in the towel and switch to republican. Some of these democrats are winning as republicans – do not look for this to continue. They are called RINOS and you can bet in the future just being a republican in name only will not be enough to win elections. Edwin Edwards is correct that some are still the same – however, small businesses know the difference between a newly converted republican who is pro- business and one who is still supporting the Democratic Party. Add the Tea party to that equation and the term RINO will be a killer to democrats masquerading as republicans.

Some are comparing the governor’s election this year to the elections in which Foster won his second term.  Back then, his opponents was Phil Preis, Tom Green and William Jefferson.  Foster won in a landslide.  Are we seeing the same results this year?  Do you think Jindal will have any formidable competition? 

You could say that Preis and Green challenged Mike Foster for not being republican enough. It would be difficult at best to accuse Governor Jindal of not being republican enough. The democrats have zero candidates even on any future horizon capable of beating Governor Jindal. Louisiana governors usually came from the ranks of our congressional delegation. Except for the democratic congressman from Orleans, who is a big supporter of President Barack Obama, the rest are republicans. The democrats cannot elect a congressman (outside of Orleans) much less a governor. It would help state wide turnout if the democrats had a well financed candidate to challenge Governor Jindal – unfortunately that happens to be a next to impossible if as of today!

State officials and legislators are running for re-election this fall.  Can they all run against President Obama as Governor Jindal is currently doing and as David Vitter did last year?

Any republican running against any white democrat will accuse the democrat of being a President Obama supporter – why wouldn’t they? When democrats run statewide or in most other elections – they get about 25% of all white voters. That is a killer number that spell disaster for democrats. White democrats can expect to have his or hers picture next to President Obama in a mailer or TV Ad. So far the democrats have not been able to overcome this association. That is why Louisiana currently has no democratic statewide elected official! Any political pundit who thinks Senator Mary Landrieu is going to be reelected is delusional. Reminding voters of just two of her votes - health care reform and the so called stimulus spending is enough to doom her reelection. Can you imagine the vicious attack ads that will run 12 and 24 across Louisiana air waves for months.

What do you think will be the major issues during the upcoming elections for legislators? 

The major issue so far has been the lack of money available to finance challengers. Add the lack of negative energy towards incumbent legislators, so not a lot of incumbents have challengers. You have to give Governor Jindal some of the credit for the peace and tranquility out there. Governor Jindal is popular and cruising towards reelection – this definitely helps his republican colleagues in the legislature.  No major issues so far – individual legislators who have a tea party challenger will have difficult reelections. The term RINO is a killer for any republican facing a creditable challenger with Tea Party support. Look for more gains by republicans at the expense of white democrats.  

Have the Tea Parties in Louisiana been hurt or helped by the recent debt ceiling fiasco?  How will this issue play within the state republican party since the party generally has been silent on this issue?

The Tea Party supplanted the Republican Party last year as the potent political force in elections at all levels in Louisiana. Just ask newly elected Congressman Jeff Landry. Most Tea Party activist are certainly registered republican – but they are at least up three levels of political intensity compared to the average registered republican. In Louisiana most voters agree with Republicans and Tea Party activist –priority number one should be - cut spending and reduce the national debt. Louisiana is a now a red state, so you can argue till the cows come home that he demos did not cause this mess. In Louisiana it’s not a close call – most Louisiana voters blame the liberal democrats for the budget crisis in Washington D. C.!  

by Stephen Sabludowsky, Publisher of Bayoubuzz.com

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