Jim Brown is a Louisiana legislator, Secretary of State and Insurance Commissioner.
Sarah Palin seems to be back in vogue, and she’s barnstorming the country supporting, with a good measure of success, a number of Tea Party candidates. Her latest success is Texan Ted Cruz, who last week won the Republican U.S. Senate nomination in the Longhorn state. And she continues to advocate states rights, and even secession, for states that have had their fill of the federal government. Maybe the lady is on to something that could interest my home state of Louisiana.
If you could sit down with each of the two presidential candidates, President Obama and Mitt Romney, what would you ask them? What insights would you be looking for? What knowledge would you expect them to have? And just how much difference do you think they could really make?
Most likely, the nation’s financial problems would be at the top of anyone’s list. “It’s the economy, stupid,” says the Ragin’ Cajun, James Carville. But can a president really make that much difference in solving the country’s economic woes? I tend to agree with a number of financial observers who say that no president has all that much influence on major economic change.
In an effort to end up on the Romney ticket as the vice presidential nominee, Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal has been out of the state almost 30% of the time in recent months, crisscrossing the nation speaking and raising money on Romney’s and his own behalf. He’s rarely been visible in his home state, but voters are getting to know him far and wide in the likes of New Jersey, Alabama, Oklahoma, North Carolina, North Dakota, Wisconsin, Virginia, Illinois, West Virginia, South Dakota, Utah, Washington, D.C., Ohio, Pennsylvania and Washington State. So the question is -- who’s in charge when the Louisiana Governor is on the road?
You would think that in an election year, with anti-tax fervor at an all time high, our politicians at state and national levels would be adverse to mining every nook and cranny for more taxes. Democrats, generally, are more willing than Republicans to hop on a new tax bandwagon. But now it looks like Republican governors, in a desperate attempt to send more revenue to state coffers, are quite willing to stick purchasers with sales taxes for whatever they buy online.
by Jim Brown
In the current presidential campaign, both parties harp on number of national problems that cry out for solutions. The economy, tax reform, healthcare, and immigration all command front-page status in the continuing political debate. But one issue is rarely discussed. In fact, it seems to be overlooked or ignored by both the Romney and the Obama campaigns -- the dramatic loss of American freedoms.
But that can’t be, you say. After all, America is “the land of the free and the home of the brave.” No country has the individual freedoms found in the United States, our leaders continually tell us. No other country comes close to the economic and individual freedoms found here at home. Well, maybe not.
Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal summed up Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney’s problem pretty well. Jindal told the Wall Street Journal last week that “there is only one candidate, Governor Romney, who has committed that he will repeal the Obomney, uh, the Obamacare tax increase.” A slip of the tongue, on a subject that continues to be an Achilles’ heel for Romney as he campaigns against the Obama healthcare plan. The question he will be answering for the coming months is simple. How can Romney run and campaign against the same healthcare plan that he initially proposed when he was Governor of Massachusetts?
Who would have thought it? Chief Justice John Roberts, who leads the Republican bastion of conservative jurisprudence on the U.S. Supreme Court, joined four Democratic justices in upholding the Obamacare health initiatives. There was uncertainty by both supporters and opponents as to what position Justice Anthony Kennedy would take. But Roberts? A strong conservative? No way would he uphold Obamacare!
In a matter of days, the U.S. Supreme Court will hand down the highly anticipated decision on whether the Obama healthcare plan is constitutional. Predicting the court’s majority mindset is a crapshoot. Court observers say the decision could go either way. But whatever the outcome, one thing is certain -- needed healthcare reform will remain elusive. Neither those for it, nor those against it have presented a viable plan that will both give adequate coverage to all Americans and get the escalating costs under control.