As President Barack Obama prepares to deliver his State of the Union Address, the White House has released the following excerpts from his prepared speech, which follows:
Unemployment rates for the state and all metro areas improved in December as the state gained jobs
over the year for the seventh straight month, the Louisiana Workforce Commission reported today.
The state’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for December was 8 percent, down from the revised November rate of
8.2 percent. Louisiana’s unemployment rate is the 19th lowest in the nation and the fifth lowest in the Southern region.
The Southern region rate for December was 9.3 percent, and the U.S. rate was 9.4 percent. The unemployment rate is
based on a sample survey of residences by the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS.)
The surprising news that Republican state Sen. B.L. “Buddy” Shaw would not seek a second term in the state Senate – reported first here in the Fax-Net – set off a political wildfire among potential candidates for the District 37 seat.
Names of potential candidates started raining down from the political skies. Among them are: Republicans state Rep. Jane Smith, state Rep. Thomas Carmody, former state Rep. Mike Powell, former state Sen. Max Malone, former Shreveport mayoral candidate Jerry Jones, Barrow Peacock, former state Rep. Billy Montgomery, District C Councilman Oliver Jenkins, Ryan Wooley (Bryan’s brother), and Democratic former city councilman Monty Walford.
Today, Greater New Orleans, Inc., the economic development alliance for the 10-parish Greater New Orleans region, announced that Santa Rosa, Calif.-based Factory VFX has opened an office in New Orleans. The company made the decision to expand to Louisiana due in large part to the state tax incentives available for qualifying productions. Factory VFX currently has an outstanding track record of work in the following forms of visual effects: compositing, plate reconstruction, wire/rig removals, matte paintings, rotoscoping, and match moving.
It was a great victory, although perhaps short-lived for New Orleans, its basketball team, the Hornets, and for Louisiana.
The New Orleans Hornets met attendance goals of the 14,735 game average required in the team's lease to keep them in the city for another year and Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal, New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu, Hornets President, Hugh Weber and Hornets Chairman Jac Sperling at a Monday press conference voiced the community’s collective appreciation for a job well done.
Tonight is another much publicized State of the Union address. The mainstream news media is in a frenzy speculating about the content of the speech. Of course, the hoopla is nothing new and happens every year.
The speech generates much talk in the beltway but is of little to no interest to most Americans. Tonight, the only thrill will be to see if someone yells “you lie” during the speech or to see if the President scolds the Supreme Court once again.
This year's Super Bowl will be old school: Packers vs. Steelers.
In an era of dizzying X-and-O game plans (but we know Xs and Os don't win games, the Johnny and Joe’s do), climate-controlled stadiums and pyrotechnic halftime shows, what could be better than this matchup if the Saints aren't repeating?
There are unmistakable similarities between President Barack Obama and Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal. Both men are relatively young, articulate and intelligent. Both men are minorities who are considered political trailblazers. Obama has reached the ultimate political prize, the White House, as a Democrat, while Jindal is considered by many to be the “Republican Obama.”
In recent months, both men have suffered political setbacks. Obama’s leftist policies have been very unpopular with the American people. His party took a horrible “shellacking” in the mid-term elections, losing control of the House of Representatives. In response, President Obama has been moving toward the political center. He signed a bill to extend the Bush tax cuts; he created a commission to eliminate red tape in government. In recent weeks, he has been meeting with business leaders to develop policies to improve the employment situation. According to the President, his State of the Union address will be focused on job creation. Do these moves mean Obama is no longer a liberal? Of course not, for all of these efforts are parts of his plan to masquerade as a moderate. While Obama has not changed his liberal stripes, his political standing has changed with the American people who are responding favorably to his supposed move to the middle. Prior to the mid-term election, Obama suffered from an approval rating that hovered around 45 percent. Today, he approval rating is ten points higher at 55 percent, according to the latest CNN poll.
In Louisiana, Bobby Jindal’s approval rating has dropped 22 points in the past two years. Pollsters point to the Governor’s heavy travel schedule and his cuts to higher education and healthcare as the causes for his falling support. However, after the last poll was released, Jindal has been spending more time at home, visiting all 64 parishes in the state, and reducing his out of state fundraising schedule. With his re-election campaign set for the fall, Jindal is trying to improve his political standing in Louisiana. The Governor is also finally offering the type of bold reforms many expected when he was elected. Last week, Jindal proposed the merger of UNO and SUNO, a move that makes sense and will save money as the state deals with a huge budget deficit. Unfortunately, over the past few years, Jindal has been a caretaker in Baton Rouge instead of a reformer. With an election season approaching, Jindal is finally offering some substantive ideas.
Clearly, he has also been distracted by his desire to be a presidential contender. Over the past few years, Jindal has made no secret of his interest in national politics as he has appeared more often on Fox News than local media outlets. Nevertheless, the exposure has not helped Jindal become a national Republican star. The Governor must realize that his national political ambitions have dimmed since his disastrous GOP response to the President’s State of the Union message. In fact, most of the presidential polls today do not even include Jindal. His much publicized book, “Leadership and Crisis,” did not induce a buying frenzy at bookstores. According to Amazon.com, Jindal’s book was ranked 19,622th in sales, not exactly a best seller..
Both Obama and Jindal saw a significant drop in public support and responded by making real changes. The President has been criticized for his liberal policies, so he is moving to the center. Jindal has been criticized for his travel schedule and his lack of attention on state matters, so he is spending more time at home and proposing an innovative way to reduce spending. It seems that Jindal and Obama have one more thing in common; both of them can read poll numbers.
Jindal Talks UNO-Southern Merger At Jefferson Parish Luncheon
Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar and Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement (BOEMRE)Director Michael R. Bromwich today announced that the agency is accepting nominations from federal agencies, industry, academia, national labs, and various research organizations for representatives to serve on the recently established Offshore Energy Safety Advisory Committee (Safety Committee).