Tuesday, 17 June 2014 11:18
Vitter uncertain, vague on issues at Baton Rouge Press Club speech
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vitter-teaThe media is talking Louisiana Senator David Vitter, now candidate for governor.  The conservative critic of Obamacare and almost everything Obama met the Baton Rouge Press Club on Monday and made some stunning comments responses to reporters' questions.  

Questions have arisen whether Vitter was prepared for his grilling.  For certain, he left the door open for future debate over his uncertain positions.

Here is what the media is reporting.  Also, below is how the Louisiana Democratic Party is trying to keep the Vitter discussion going:

When speaking to the Baton Rouge Press Club luncheon yesterday, Sen. David Vitter said that if elected Governor, it will be his “last political job, elected or appointed, period.” While saying that he’s not interested in talking about Gov. Bobby Jindal’s job performance, Vitter took a subtle shot at him by stating that he is “not even running to gain a cameo appearance on Duck Dynasty,” referring to Jindal’s recent appearance on the show. 

Vitter also spent time explaining where he stands in issues important to many Louisianians. He wants to “overhaul and change” the way Medicaid works before agreeing to the expansion, but he does not rule out accepting federal Medicaid aid. Vitter said that he supports Jindal’s decision to privatize the charity hospitals, but that he would want to adjust and tweak the current system.   

Vitter said that he did not support the levee board lawsuit, but not having read the bill that Jindal recently signed carefully, he was unable to state whether or not he would have signed it if he was in Jindal’s position. 

In the Common Core question, Vitter conveyed that he is less skeptical than Jindal, but he is not sure whether the state should use the PARCC test (Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers) next year. However, Vitter said that he is in favor of “the strong standards that Common Core represents.” On the TOPS issue, Vitter said that he, like most people, is concerned about escalating costs. While being extremely popular, TOPS is also expensive for a state that is “on track to no longer being able to afford the student grants.” Jindal has so far refused to change TOPS, but Vitter asserted that he would want to “keep the positive aspects of the program, while dealing with the ‘runaway costs’ associated with it.”



A Vitter spokesperson wrote in an e-mail to The Wire that Vitter's support of the expansion depends on fixing the program. The program would have to be "fundamentally reformed" as to not continue to "drain state dollars away from higher education" and "provide additional disincentives for able-bodied folks to work."


The visit to the Baton Rouge Press Club is part of a series of leadership forums across the state. Vitter is visiting Shreveport, Lafayette, Baton Rouge, and Monroe to talk about education, job development, higher educaton, public-private hospital parnerships, and traffic congestion.



And now, below is stabs (email message) from the Louisiana Democratic Party

"A tongue-tied Senator David Vitter stumbled, stumping for governor. Some say Vitter was unprepared when he was grilled on the state's big issues today after announcing he was running for governor five months ago...."
WBRZ -- Vitter: "Haven't done my homework" on issues -- http://www.wbrz.com/player/?video_id=19910 


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