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It’s getting close to redistricting time for legislators in Louisiana. By federal law, all election districts must be reapportioned every 10 years to reflect the latest census figures. But should legislators, who have a vested interest in how the redistricting lines are drawn, actually do th…

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It’s getting close to redistricting time for legislators in Louisiana. By federal law, all election districts must be reapportioned every 10 years to reflect the latest census figures. But should legislators, who have a vested interest in how the redistricting lines are drawn, actually do th…

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Down here in south Louisiana, where politics and football are too easily labeled as theater and where forgotten pirates and fallen pastors maintain high regards, the weather is a staple character of life.

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Last week’s Louisiana Supreme Court ruling curtailing immunity for judges sent shock waves through legal circles, particularly the judiciary. And rightfully so.

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On one side of the ballot, prognosticators and at least one poll are predicting that young voters will cast a long shadow over next year’s top tier federal elections, when President Donald Trump will stand for re-election. Closer to home, reporters and consultants have identified an unmistak…

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Editor’s Note: This column, which earned Sam Hanna Jr. a first place award for best regular column in the Louisiana Press Association’s Better Newspaper Contest, was first published the week of April 2, 2018.

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Huey Long would have been right in the middle of the current presidential election if he were still alive. He began a legacy of a long list of Louisiana politicians who had national aspirations. Later governors John McKeithen, Edwin Edwards, Buddy Roemer and Bobby Jindal all fell by the ways…

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Louisiana’s business voice, LABI, as well as the Louisiana Insurance Department each took a huge hit in the waning days of the recent legislative session. LABI, with the full support of Insurance Commissioner Jim Donelon, pegged legislation to supposedly reduce insurance rates in the state a…

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Just when it appeared the regular legislative session would come to a close last week amid little fanfare, along came what’s been dubbed the largest highway construction bill in a generation.

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We should have known, back during the first week of April, that this was going to be different kind of regular session.

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Whether school teachers and support personnel get a one-time or permanent pay raise appears to be the primary wedge dividing the House and Senate as the 2019 regular legislative session winds down.

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Louisiana Congressman Steve Scalise says he is still struggling over whether to forgive the man wo shot him two years ago. “I’ve never, internally, formally forgiven the shooter from the baseball shooting,” he said. “It’s something I’ve struggled with as a Catholic.”

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President Donald Trump’s promise of new I-10 bridge sort of stole the show when he visited Lake Charles last week. But several other stories, smaller in scope but just as politically interesting, have also bubbled up in the wake of Trump’s most recent swing through Louisiana.

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Roughly three years ago, newly minted Gov. John Bel Edwards, a populist Democrat, convinced a Republican-controlled Louisiana Legislature to approve a new one-cent sales tax to pull the state out of a fiscal ditch.

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House Appropriations Chairman Cameron Henry turned heads last week when he pushed the state budget bill through the lower chamber and sent it to the Senate for further consideration. Legislatively, it was a notable feat, but what Henry suggested about the politics of the session was somethin…

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If there’s anything senators like discussing more than politics, it’s themselves. That became evident last week when the Senate and Governmental Affairs Committee debated a resolution to create a special designation for former senators.

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It has been nearly a year since I was sitting across from Lt. Gov. Billy Nungesser, interviewing him for an episode of “Capitol Gains,” when he said something that genuinely surprised me. The show is our online video series over at LaPolitics.com, and Nungesser, a Republican, was doing his b…

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There are two words that can be uttered inside the Capitol’s marbled walls that are capable of instantly capture the attention of any of its inhabitants: John Alario.

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Much has been made about the 90-day fundraising ban that Gov. John Bel Edwards has been saddled with during and after the ongoing regular session, but very little attention has been given to the backup fundraising structure that has been established to support the incumbent’s bid.

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The regular session convened Monday, April 8, and the filing deadline for quarterly fundraising reports was just a day later, on Tuesday. For the politicos who had connections to both happenings, such as the governor, members of the Legislature and those who are seeking to steal their seats,…

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It probably never dawned on LSU football coach Ed Orgeron that he would be criticized for attending a fundraiser for Gov. John Bel Edwards, but he did and he was.

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State lawmakers will convene the regular legislative session beginning Monday. Under normal circumstances, you would expect a hum-drum affair over the following 65 days of the fiscal-only session.

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I wanted a straight answer on the politics that have been fermenting for the regular session of the Legislature that convenes Monday, April 8. So I called Senate Natural Resources Chairman Norby Chabert of Terrebonne Parish. A former Democrat turned Republican and the third member of his imm…

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Louisiana’s Secretary of Transportation and Development Shawn Wilson has it right: don’t expect the Legislature to raise the gasoline tax at the pump this year. Because nothing it or Wilson have done changes the fact that no increase is needed.

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You’ve no doubt been reading about all of the bills senators and representatives have been working on for the regular session that convenes April 8. And they’re not alone in that task; legislative staffers, department heads and attorneys for the state are largely the ones writing legislation.

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It’s unfortunate that the focus on leadership performance at LSU often only occurs regarding athletics. We must get beyond the current controversy in athletics to see the real problem at LSU.  We need new leadership at the top. Both King Alexander and Joe Alleva were hired during the Jindal …

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What if Gov. John Bel Edwards seizes re-election from the hands of his enemies, as he has already promised? For starters, it wouldn’t matter if he captured victory by 1 percent or one vote. A win would be a win, and it would be a historic victory as well. Edwards would become the first Democ…

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Those who say you can’t take it with you clearly haven’t met state Sen. Francis Thompson, the Legislature’s second-longest serving member. The Delhi Democrat also enjoys a special designation in regard to our state laws that regulate how candidates can spend certain campaign dollars.

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Gov. John Bel Edwards apparently yearns for yesteryear, or back in the day when the Revenue Estimating Conference would bow to a governor’s wishes and peg state revenues at a figure that tickled the governor’s fancy.

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If you’re willing to look closely, you may find this cycle’s gubernatorial election doesn’t quite yet possess a little bit of everything for the masses, but it’s starting to get darn close for political junkies.

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Having publicly announced his candidacy for governor on Dec. 6, Congressman Ralph Abraham had roughly three weeks to collect campaign contributions for the fundraising period that ended Dec. 31.

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The spat between Gov. John Bel Edwards and the Republican leadership in the House of Representatives over the health of the state’s finances has nothing to do with whether Louisiana can afford to give school teachers and support personnel a pay raise in the coming fiscal year.

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While Democratic boosters in Louisiana are eager to double down on the candidacy of Gov. John Bel Edwards, Republican donors and conservative-minded associations are taking a wait-and-see approach. For now.

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You may have had a bit of fun last week back at home at your local Mardi Gras shindigs, but you probably didn’t have full-bars-in-the-elevators fun. “They’re called party-vators,” said a laughing Laura MacDiarmid Ferrell, who manages government and public affairs for Cheniere Energy, which h…

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According to Gov. John Bel Edwards’ Wikipedia page, he’s a conservative Democrat who is pro-life and pro-gun rights. Whether Edwards realizes it or not, there is no such thing as a conservative Democrat any longer.

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What this Louisiana governor’s race needs is a candidate who is willing to say exactly what’s on his mind and that just might be the prescription for what ails us.

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