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Thursday, 12 June 2014 13:09
Cassidy kicking Landrieu; Jindal fumbling, fudging on numbers
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jindal-landrieuA Republican based-firm is claiming that the LAGOP candidate for U.S. Senate, Bill Cassidy, is leading Mary Landrieu by a sizeable six-point differential 50-44.


If this poll were accurate, it would put the Republicans and Cassidy in a position to win in the general election instead of beating Landrieu in the runoff. The current conventional wisdom has been that there will be a real battle between Landrieu and Dr. Bill Cassidy after all other candidates leave the turf.

Cassidy could very well gain traction given the recent endorsement by the Executive Committee of the Louisiana Republican Party.

While the Tea Party and the ultra-conservatives appear to be miffed by the organization's endorsement of Cassidy and they might want to avenge the insiders' actions, don't expect a Cantor-style revolt against Cassidy. If Cassidy does appear that he could win in the first round of the "jungle primary", chances are the right wing will put away its anger. Beating Landrieu has been the rallying cry for this political sector ever since her Obamacare vote.

Over the past weeks, Landrieu's campaign argument has been one of "I've delivered".

Her TV commercial featuring a doting dad, the former New Orleans Mayor and Court of Appeals Judge, Moon Landrieu, who is making a subtle case that Louisiana will lose much if the powerful U.S. Senator were to be beaten.

The poll does appear to have one question that in my view is unfair and skews the numbers associated with President Obama's new EPA regulations.

For instance, take question # 17: "The EPA regulation requires the states to reduce carbon emissions by 30% by 2030, which would reduce global carbon emissions by a very small amount."

The response?

More likely to support the new regulation ............... 24%
More likely to oppose the new regulation .............. 48%
No difference in your decision ................................ 24%
Unsure or no opinion ............................................... 4%

The issue? The use of the words, "by a very small amount".

How much is very small? Of course one would be opposed to government regulation if the end result was not just a small amount, but a "very" small amount, at that. An amount that is unmentioned, in fact.

Without further evidence, it would be difficult to claim the US Senate results are inaccurate regardless of the close relationship between the polling firm and the Republican Party. The poll measured likely voters and Republicans almost always do well when measuring this audience. Also, this poll is not that different from other recent polls in which Landrieu and Cassidy were pitted head to head rather than in a race with multi-parties involved.

It all will come down to turnout and Landrieu latching onto an issue that will not only energize her base but will convince undecideds and weak-Cassidy voters that the doctor's record has been malpractice and his patient is and will continue to suffer badly.

Jindal numbers game

Yesterday I wrote a column " Louisiana GDP facts: "Jindal miracle" or mirage"  that focused upon the Louisiana economy. The column took issue with Governor Bobby Jindal's repeated claim that Louisiana was doing better than the country in gross national product.

As previously noted, Jindal has been claiming that "the local economy "is growing 50% faster than the national economy".

My take after the federal government released the numbers yesterday, comparing all of the states, Louisiana has had two economies during the Jindal administration. The first economy occurred during Jindal's first two years. The second economy covers the latter years of his administration.

Unquestionably, from 2008 through 2010, the total US economy GNP for those two years was -.9 % during the days of the deep recession. Louisiana's GDP during the same term was 9%. Again, Louisiana was benefiting from the Katrina money and other improvements which Jindal can take credit.

However, from 2010 to 2013, there has been a major turnaround.

Interestingly, that reversal took place during the time that the stimulus or Recovery Act money began to hit the ground. Jindal, who has called Obama incompetent in handling the economy and healthcare, was of course against the stimulus and other Obama-based legislation.

Without my arguing in favor or against, assuming the GNP is the litmus test for success versus failure, there appears to be a fascinating and remarkable differential between the Obama's and the Jindal's economy.

As I wrote yesterday:

According to Politicfact:

politifact

Adding 2013 to the GDP chart, United States wins, The U.S. real GDP growth slowed to 1.8 percent in 2013. Again, Louisiana scored only 1.3 percent.

Governor Jindal took office in January 2008. Comparing the years of Louisiana GDP growth to the United States, during this period of time, the United States averaged .86% through 2013. Louisiana, averaged 1.84%.

When adding the numbers from the stimulus days of 2009 through 2013, the Obama economy beats the Jindal economy by a ratio of 29.5: 1. Yep. roughly 30 to 1.  Not the Louisiana 150:100 (US) ratio that would be equivalent to the "is growing 50% faster than the national economy" claims.

These numbers simply fly in the face of Jindal's public statements about the glowing Louisiana economy under his administration.

Let us hope that 2014 is better. And yes, the Jindal administration has made numerous economic development announcements over the years and the oil and gas sector of the Louisiana economy has gotten better with the price of oil and gas making this possible.

But, any way you cut it, compared to the U.S. and other states, the past three years have been dismal, at best and horrible, at worse.

While the governor has his national media apologists, it will be increasingly more difficult for the governor to use his Louisiana resume when running in Iowa and New Hampshire, especially considering the government has little money in reserve and according to many budget followers, the state could be well over a billion dollars in the budget hole next legislative session, navigating an rudderless skiff without a paddle.

Supporters of former Louisiana Governor Kathleen Blanco just might be able to claim that she left with the state having a two million dollar surplus and Jindal left with the economy in shambles compared to the rest of the country and the state has fallen and can't get up.

No, not the type of record that would convince a national audience--not even a deaf, dumb and blind conservative media who somehow has not been able to locate a single Louisiana citizen to get their side of the Jindal story.

And perhaps the greatest irony of all, arguably, Landrieu who has been a loyal servant to President Obama until recent months can effectively shunt any argument Jindal (and perhaps others) might have against her during the US Senate race.

Jindal has constantly compared the "Louisiana Way" to the "stimulus, bailout, spendthrift-ways" of the beltway of Washington DC.

Whether one wants to argue the point on different grounds, on the gridiron of Gross National Product, right now, Jindal and company fumbled badly entering into second half of the administration game.

But, now the score is on the board, in bright lights, for all to see. Even those who have been blind.

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