Today Governor John Bel Edwards formally launched his campaign for re-election. In a video, Governor Edwards reminds voters how far Louisiana has come under his leadership, from record budget deficits and a weak economy to budget surpluses and the largest economic development projects and largest GDP in Louisiana history. Governor Edwards also speaks about some of his priorities for the days ahead, like his teacher pay raise plan and his fight for legislation to increase the minimum wage and ensure women receive equal pay for equal work. Governor Edwards closes the video by asking Louisianans for their support and prayers on the campaign trail in 2019.
“We are truly better off than we were three years ago. And we’re working hard to make it even better. That’s why I am formally announcing my campaign for re-election. Serving as your Governor has been one of the greatest honors of my life and, with your support, I look forward to four more years of even greater prosperity and opportunities,” Governor Edwards says in the video. “Donna and I look forward to seeing you and your family on the campaign trail as we continue working to put Louisiana First. Thank you and God bless.”
Under Gov. Edwards’ leadership, Louisiana has:
• Passed a bipartisan budget compromise that took us from record deficits to surpluses and stable funding for our critical priorities.
• Secured more than 100 major economic development projects, nearly 30,000 new jobs, and $30.7 billion worth of capital investments.
• Had 15 straight months of year-over-year job growth, with an economy that’s larger than ever before.
• Expanded Medicaid to 480,000 working Louisianans, cutting the uninsured rate in half, keeping rural hospitals open, and saving lives.
• Brought together law enforcement, the faith community, Republicans and Democrats to pass a package of bipartisan criminal justice reform laws used as a model by President Trump.
Over the coming weeks, Governor Edwards will tour the state to tout the progress Louisiana has made during the first three years of his administration. Events details to come.
FULL VIDEO TRANSCRIPT BELOW
Governor John Bel Edwards: Three years ago when you elected me, I promised that everyday I served as your Governor I would put Louisiana First. Your families, jobs, businesses, healthcare, and our children’s education would be my top priorities. I’ve kept that promise, and as a result Louisiana is moving in the right direction. But we’ve still got lots of work to do.
When I took office, Louisiana was in deep financial trouble. The previous administration left the largest deficit in history-over $2 billion. Today, through our commitment to responsible spending cuts and honest budgeting, we are running our first budget surpluses in a decade, while cutting taxes last year by $600 million.
In 2016 our hospitals and universities were in danger of closing their doors after suffering devastating cuts. Now, they have the reliable funding needed to care for the sick and educate our children. Before I was sworn in, unemployment was through the roof. Today, more people are working in Louisiana. Our economy is bigger than ever before, and we’ve landed the biggest and best development projects in our state’s history, creating nearly 30,000 new jobs.
Three years ago the number of our people without healthcare was among the highest in the nation. On my first day in office, I expanded Medicaid, saving the state hundreds of millions of dollars, cutting the number of uninsured in half, and providing life-saving healthcare to our working families. That is working together to put Louisiana first.
We are truly better off than we were three years ago. And we’re working hard to make it even better. That’s why I am formally announcing my campaign for re-election. Serving as your Governor has been one of the greatest honors of my life and, with your support, I look forward to four more years of even greater prosperity and opportunities as we continuing the fight for equal pay and a higher minimum wage, bring more jobs and economic expansion, and enact the first teacher pay raise in a decade.
Now, I realize this campaign won’t be easy. My opponents and the special interest groups supporting them will spend millions of dollars attacking me and my record with partisan talking points, distortions, and outright lies. But we must never forget what their biggest and most sincere complaint is; they aren’t happy with where we are today, because they preferred where we were three years ago.
I believe we will be successful, because the people of Louisiana know we’ve come too far to turn back now. We have a real opportunity to continue building a Louisiana that is as good as it’s people. And by visiting JohnBelforLouisiana.com and signing up to be a part of our team, we will build it together.
Follow us on social media, join us as we continue our tour of the state. And most importantly, please send your prayers.
Donna and I look forward to seeing you and your family on the campaign trail as we continue working to our Louisiana First. Thank you and God bless.