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Wednesday, 01 December 2010 07:41
Poll: Louisiana Voters Unhappy, Weary Of Gov. Jindal
 

On Tuesday, Bernie Pinsonat of the Southern Media Opinion & Research (SMOR) released a new statewide poll focusing upon the mood of the Louisiana voters.  One of the biggest surprises was evidence that Governor Bobby Jindal who has made a strong effort to appeal to a national audience is losing popularity back home.  Also, voters appear weary of government yet they realize that many of the government programs will be cut this spring. Here is a Bayoubuzz interview with Pinsonat regarding the fall 2010 SMOR poll.

Overall, what does this poll say about the state of the state of Louisiana from a pure political perspective?

Voters in Louisiana are unhappy with the lack of progress on solving systemic problems such as education, highways, roads; health care and a lack of jobs.  Thirty nine percent think conditions in Louisiana are getting worse, only nineteen percent think conditions are getting better. Voters are outraged by the sky high salaries political appointees are now making as they (voters) struggle with pay checks that barely pays their bill. We are paying for these big salaries and we are cutting higher education and health care! Why wouldn’t voters resent these outrageous salaries?

 

Were you personally surprised about any of the results of the poll?

This survey reflects the pessimism of a lot of voters. I am not surprised as voters have seen the oil industry collapse because of the moratorium, the closing of Avondale Shipyard, the chemical industry is struggling and Louisiana families are feeling the impact of a national recession. Voters are not interested in paying more taxes for anything.  They believe the money they are sending to Baton Rouge is being wasted. This is not unique to Louisiana; most states face budget shortfalls and those voters are also not willing to pay more taxes. These polling numbers point to a very controversial session next spring.   

 

Why do you believe Governor Jindal has plummeted in the polls?

For the last six month I have noticed more and more people saying they were disappointed with Governor Jindal. When Governor began appearing on national TV touting his book, there was a noticeable increase in the number of people criticizing Jindal’s national ambitions versus the problems he was not addressing back home. This survey certainly confirms people have grown weary of Governor Jindal constant out-of-state travel. Not everyone, but forty-six percent is a lot of voters! If Governor Jindal is not aware of the voters displeasure with his travels, color him out of touch!

 

 

Jindal dropped in the polls substantially after the legislative pay raise issue.  But he quickly rebounded after he cut the Non-Governmental Organizations’ state funding.  But given the results of this poll and based upon the past, doesn’t he have plenty of resiliencies since the state is very conservative? 

This is uncharted territory for Governor Jindal. Getting a few good PR headlines for cutting a million or so for questionable projects is not going to offset the budget disaster awaiting Governor Jindal and the legislature. The spring 2011 legislative session must produce an additional one point seven billion or so to avoid dramatic cuts to balance the state’s budget.  These are brutal cuts to government programs that affect people’s lives. Governor Jindal cannot shift all of the blame for this budget mess on the legislature as he did on the pay raise debacle. Candidate Jindal repeatedly told Louisiana voters he would straighten out the state finances as he campaigned for governor – they are still waiting for some straightening out by Governor Jindal!  {sidebar id=4}

What do the poll numbers say about Mary Landrieu, John Kennedy and Jay Dardenne?

Senator Mary Landrieu is doing better with some voters as her job performance continues to improve. She is now off life support, but she is by no means strong enough to get reelected. Senator Landrieu should be delighted, after all, she as popular as Governor Jindal and their reelects are close.  Treasurer John Kennedy is out there discussing his possible solutions and he is getting positive numbers for his efforts. Kennedy’s plan may not be the solution, but at least he does have a plan! Somebody needs to educate Paul Rainwater on this political fact – when you trash someone’s plan--at the very least have your own plan to compare. John Kennedy is running circles around Rainwater and by the way – winning over voters. Jay Dardenne numbers are ok for someone who went through a tough campaign. He did take a beating from a fellow republican and in the next six month he has an opportunity to improve these numbers.  Jay Dardenne will be reelected next October as he has a solid base of support from EBR to Jefferson Parish to St Tammany or as we now call it” the big vote triangle”.

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