As of now, what is the shape of the Louisiana political waterfront?
This was the gist of a series of questions I asked political analyst and pollster Bernie Pinsonat during a Facebook and Twitter live video conference we held on Wednesday.
Last night, the world watched President Donald Trump give his first State of the Union speech. Politically, it resonated throughout America. What about in Louisiana? More broadly, what can politicians and legislators learn from the Trump phenomena as they approach the upcoming elections and the legislative session?
The point isn’t so much that Democrats’ positions continue to deteriorate in Louisiana, or even why, but why Democrats continue to let it happen.
My Advocate colleague Tyler Bridges wrote a piece on how, despite enthusiasm stemming from Democrat Gov. John Bel Edwards’ 2015 upset win, indicators keep showing the party’s fortunes declining.
The Louisiana Republican Party through its Chairman, Roger Villere slammed Governor John Bel Edwards, the Louisiana Democratic Party and Gumbo PAC for an email that was sent out by the Democrats bashing Congressman Ralph Abraham. Below is the LAGOP response and the original email by the Democrats
In the 2015 gubernatorial campaign, John Bel Edwards pretended he was a conservative Democrat. He emphasized his military background and his support for the pro-life cause and the Second Amendment. Thus, when he was elected, Louisiana supporters expected a somewhat conservative Governor who would steer the state in the right direction. Instead, voters have witnessed a typical “tax and spend” liberal Governor who is a proponent of a large state government and is resistant to tax and fiscal reform.
If you’ve been anywhere near a television set lately, whether in Baton Rouge or Boca Raton, you probably have watched that man with the wry grin, slow southern drawl, high-pitch voice answering questions about why he dissected the Trump judicial nominee, why he’s “fer or agin” tax reform, or whether the Russian probe is a worthwhile endeavor.
Today, interim Sheriff Joe Lopinto and John Fortunato qualified for the upcoming election for Sheriff of Jefferson Parish.
According to a press release from his campaign, "Lopinto, who (by law) became sheriff when former Sheriff Newell Normand retired in the fall of 2017, is energetically campaigning, sharing his vision for a safer Jefferson Parish.
Like Alabama, Louisiana is a deep red state with a large majority of conservative voters. In Louisiana, all of the statewide elected officials are Republicans, except for the accidental Governor, John Bel Edwards, a Democrat.
In November of 2015, he was victorious in the Louisiana gubernatorial race against then U.S. Senator David Vitter, the Republican candidate. Vitter is a staunch conservative who had been an elected official for almost a quarter of a century. Unfortunately for Republicans, Vitter was a very flawed candidate. He was controversial within the GOP and had alienated many of the state’s party leaders.
A hue and cry is mounting around the country that voting machines used on Election Day are eminently hackable. Congress is investigating charges by the Office of Homeland Security that Russia attempted to hack into voting machines in 21 different states. So is the integrity of our election system being undermined? Are computer hackers able to change election results? What gives?
Ok, folks. Is the Louisiana Democratic Party now the “Comeback Kid”, now that a virtual nobody in the political world, without any campaign money was able to get within ten points from taking home all of the treasurer marbles in the most recent Louisiana Treasurer’s race, which concluded Saturday night?
Is there any lesson learned for the next upcoming statewide election?
In discussing the recent Louisiana Treasurer’s race and the New Orleans elections, in particular, that was the question I posed during the interview I conducted with Louisiana Weekly political editor and WRNO Radio weekend talk show host Christopher Tidmore and John Couvillon of JMC Analytics and Polling of Louisiana.
The Louisiana Treasurer’s race could go down into history as a "most peculiar election”. Or, how about, Louisiana’s Rodney Dangerfield race? Or, both?
When looking back at Saturday’s match ultimately won by John Schroder against Derrick Edwards, Simon and Garfunkel's "Most Peculiar Man" crosses my mind. If anything, the race a "stranger than strange" competition. John Couvillon, one of the two panelists on Bayoubuzz's Facebook Live discussion this morning, has an interesting take. He looks at the race as the Rodney Dangerfield political clash, an election that simply got “no respect”.
Last night, John Schroder, now-Louisiana Treasurer-elect, won a convincing victory against Democrat Derrick Edwards in an election that had worse than an abysmal turnout. John Couvillon President and JMC Polling and Analytics published the following early Sunday morning on his website:
The 2017 election cycle in Louisiana has concluded with last night’s runoffs, and Republican former state representative John Schroder is now State Treasurer. However, his 56-44% victory was identical to the margin that Republican Bill Cassidy defeated Mary Landrieu in the 2014 runoffs. There was a unique set of circumstances at play leading to this identical result, which can be explained by these highlights gleaned from examination of unofficial precinct data:
The Republican Party is stating it is in active mode.
In an email just released the GOP is reminding all that there is an election tomorrow and votes are important to help John Schroder win the Louisiana Treasurer’s seat.