Lt. Gov. Jay Dardenne is taking aim at gubernatorial rival U.S. Sen. David Vitter because he skipped a nonbinding Senate vote this week and held a campaign event with New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie in Baton Rouge.
In a statement released by his campaign, Dardenne noted that Vitter was the only senator who didn’t vote on a Republican-backed budget plan Tuesday night.
David Vitter (left) Jay Dardenne (right)
“Instead of putting his constituents first, he was seen sipping on a microbrew with New Jersey Governor Chris Christie in Louisiana for his gubernatorial bid,” Dardenne said. ” Louisiana is in desperate need of real leadership and unfortunately it already seem like Senator Vitter is ready to give us more of the same in Louisiana, putting his own personal ambitions ahead of the needs of the people.”
Dardenne and Vitter, both Republicans, also face Democratic state Rep. John Bel Edwards and Republican Public Service Commissioner Scott Angelle in the Oct. 24 election. If no candidate gets more than 50 percent of the vote, a Nov. 21 runoff will be held between the top two vote-getters.
News came out this week on Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal’s latest book, due out in the fall.
Here are some additional details the governor provided to The Advocate on what the book will cover and how it relates to his time leading Louisiana:
“As governor, I’ve come to realize how important every day is, and every decision is. Any student of American history will draw the same conclusion — leadership matters. Working every day to aggressively recruit companies to grow our economy in Louisiana has paid off, but only because we made a decision to focus on it relentlessly. The same could be said for reforming our education system in New Orleans after the hurricanes, you have to make a decision and then have the determination to see it through. I’m a bit of a history buff, and this book will focus on the crucial decisions, some of which are little known, that have shaped our nation’s history.”
Publisher Threshold Editions, an imprint of Simon & Schuster that specializes in conservative non-fiction, has said American Will will include “dramatic tales that demonstrate the courage, faith, and vision that we need in 2016″ — a nod to the presidential race.
Jindal, a Republican who can’t seek re-election because of a term-limit, has been considering a run for president in 2016. He’s expected to make a formal announcement after the legislative session ends next month.
The legislation, House Bill 707, seeks to carve out protections for people who oppose same-sex marriage. It has been linked to controversial “religious freedom” measures in Indiana and Arkansas.
Despite strong backing from Gov. Bobby Jindal, Johnson’s bill has yet to be heard in committee. Johnson told The Advocate he has been working to build support from individual members before it moves ahead, and he expects a committee hearing next week or the following week.
In the video, which was paid for by Johnson’s campaign fund, Johnson sets out to defend the measure as an issue of protecting religious beliefs and necessary as the U.S. Supreme Court weighs whether same-sex marriage should be legal across the country. Currently, 37 states allow same-sex couples to wed. Louisiana voters in 2004 adopted a constitutional amendment to ban gay marriage here, but the state has seen growing support for since.
Johnson’s legislation would bar the state from revoking the licenses of or refusing to contract with businesses or people because they oppose same-sex marriage. It also would protect tax statuses of groups that only support marriage between a man and a woman.
Critics argue the bill could encourage discrimination against gay people and lesbians. Equality Louisiana and other groups in support of gay rights have launched a “Not My Louisiana” campaign against the proposal.
The legislation was the only bill Jindal individually referenced during his State of the State speech opening the legislative session last month.
“This idea that all men should have the freedom of belief and the free exercise of religion has been a central principle of our republic since the time of its founding,” Johnson, a Bossier City Republican, says in the new video as ominous music plays in the background. “The founders understood that this right of conscience and belief is the most basic inalienable right that we have.”
According to a finance report filed in January, Johnson’s campaign fund had about $21,000 in the bank.
State legislators will play a charity basketball game at the Pete Maravich Assembly Center on LSU’s campus this week.
The Louisiana Legislature’s annual HoopLA game is slated for 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, with an “Out of Bounds Bash” food and beverage area on the PMAC floor slated to open at 6 p.m. with a silent auction.
HoopLA pits members of the state Senate against the state House to raise money for the Legislators Charity Fund, which helps fund various charity projects including the rehab of a community basketball court that will be announced Wednesday.
Cox cable network will replay the game, along with interviews with legislators and other guests, throughout the month of May — beginning Friday.
Jindal, a Republican who can’t seek re-election as governor because of term limits, has been mulling a run for president in 2016. He has said he will announce his intentions after the state legislative session ends June 11.
According to The Associated Press, Jindal said in a statement via Threshold that his latest book will serve as “a call to arms” for the future as he reviews events ranging from the Louisiana Purchase to the Cold War. The announcement also adds that the book offers “dramatic tales that demonstrate the courage, faith, and vision that we need in 2016″ — a nod to the presidential race.
New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie will be in Baton Rouge Tuesday night to support U.S. Sen. David Vitter’s campaign for governor.
Christie, a Republican who is considering a run for president and former head of the Republican Governors Association, will appear at a “meet and greet” event with Vitter at 4 p.m. According to Vitter’s campaign, Team Vitter will serve crawfish and jambalaya, and attendees who bring 10 friends can get a picture with the Republican duo.
NJ Gov. Chris Christie (AP photo)
According to a release from Christie’s Leadership Matters for America PAC, the New Jersey governor also will appear at a private event benefiting the pro-Vitter Fund for Louisiana’s Future PAC at an undisclosed location in Baton Rouge beginning at 5:30 p.m.
The events are among Christie’s first public appearances since charges were announced Friday against a trio of top Christie allies in a bridge closing scandal.
According to the email from Leadership Matters for America PAC, Christie also will host a meet and greet with Mississippi Gov. Phil Bryant earlier on Tuesday, as well as a closed-door event with the Mississippi Republican Party.
Louisiana Treasurer John Kennedy headed back to the classroom last week.
Kennedy, who serves as a substitute school teacher about three times a year, taught social studies to eighth graders at Andrew Jackson Middle School in Chalmette last week. This week, he’ll substitute teach in Houma, according to a news release from his office.
“It’s tough to be a teacher. Every elected official should spend time in front of a classroom of students,” Kennedy said in a statement. “If you’re shaping education policy, you need to substitute teach in order to fully understand the challenges facing both our teachers and our students.”