October 22, 2011
POLITICS: Let The Good Governor Roll
It's Election Day today in Lousiana:
[T]he electorate will settle increasingly nasty bouts for lieutenant governor, secretary of state and the state board of education. Local ballots are dotted with contested legislative matchups, a handful of judicial contests in New Orleans, and parish offices in Jefferson, Plaquemines, St. Bernard, St. Tammany, St. Charles and St. John the Baptist.
Voters also must navigate a gaggle of state constitutional amendments and several local tax issues at the parish and municipal level.
Polls open at 6 a.m. and close at 8 p.m. Any voter in line by 8 p.m. should be allowed to vote. Louisiana requires voters to present valid identification.
The big national name on the ballot is Bobby Jindal, up for re-election to his second term as governor; Jindal, the nation's first Indian-American governor, turned 40 in June.
In Louisiana's idiosyncratic system, Jindal needs 50% of the vote today to avoid a runoff. He enters the day a prohibitive favorite:
Jindal, who easily won his first term in 2007, has raised over $11 million for his bid, trumping his nearest rival, Democrat and Clairborne Parish teacher Tara Hollis, who has raised only $40,000, of which $18,000 came in the form of in-kind contributions.
Jindal has been leading in recent polls, coming in at 57 percent in a WWL-TV poll earlier this month, with Hollis polling at five percent.
Louisiana, as a socially conservative Southern state, has trended Republican at the national level for decades, but only after 2005's Hurricane Katrina left the state's Democratic political elite badly discredited did Republicans really break through - Jindal won the Governor's mansion in 2007 and in 2010 gained the first GOP legislative majority in the state since Reconstruction. The inability of the state's Democratic machine to mount a credible challenge to Jindal is symbolic of those shifting fortunes in the state and the region, and also of Jindal's status as a rising star in the national GOP: Jindal is the same age as Mitt Romney in 1987, Rick Perry in 1991, Barack Obama in 2001, and Ronald Reagan in 1951. We will be hearing a lot more from him in years to come.
We'll see. The Dems have no one but themselves to blame for their position in Louisiana, after decades of crooks, charlatans and incopetents holding office (or, in the case of Edwin Edwards, all three).
Notwithstanding his soporific debut rebutting the State of the Union, he seems like an intelligent guy. The problem, of course, is that anyone seeking the national stage in the GOP has to pass muster with the Tea Party, and the evangelicals. Can he walk the thin line between adhering to the dogma and maintaining electability.
Boy arn't we glad the Democrats don't force their candidates to adhere to any specific dogmas like those crazy Republicans! Man, I for one am proud of those Democrats!
Has any GOP candidate had a Sistah Souljah moment, without having to go on bended knee to the the Great Leader (Limbaugh)?
Has any Democratic candidate not bowed before NOW, NAACP, Global Warming Zelots, Abortionists, Unions, .etc. Need I list a few more?
Several of the GOP candidates this cycle have shot themselves in the foot by running from conservative orthodoxy. Romney's inability to pass 25% in the polls is primarily attributable to his untrustworthiness on issues in general and his defenses of Romneycare in particular. Perry's major self-inflicted wound was calling immigration hardliners "heartless" in defending in-state tuition for illegal immigrant students. Huntsman's yammering about global warming and the like have left him lucky to break 1% in the polls on a good day. Pawlenty's campaign never recovered from pulling his punches against Romneycare. Even a guy like Santorum still suffers from his bad record on spending and backing Arlen Specter in a primary fight.
The primary voters just want a reliable candidate who credibly supports the things they want done. Shouldn't be so much to ask, but it's been hard to find.
"The primary voters just want a reliable candidate who credibly supports the things they want done. Shouldn't be so much to ask, but it's been hard to find."
That's because the primary voters don't pull the purse strings of the candidates.
BTW, you sound foolish for calling the Wall Street Occupiers "out of touch" for pointing out this obvious truth.