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Angelle Fails to Reach Voters, Accountability Questions Persist

BATON ROUGE – With another disappointing gubernatorial debate behind him, Public Service Commissioner Scott Angelle’s support in the race for governor remains nearly flat. Angelle has failed to connect with voters or to meaningfully distinguish himself from the other Republicans running to be the next Bobby Jindal, and with barely two weeks left in the race — he still hasn’t addressed lingering questions about his accountability for the Bayou Corne sinkhole disaster.

When hundreds of Louisiana families were losing their homes to the sinkhole crisis in Assumption Parish, Scott Angelle cut and run. He abruptly left his post when he was needed most, to run for his current office as Public Service Commissioner. In contrast, the new front-runner in the race for governor, Rep. John Bel Edwards, has never faltered or backed down in a lifetime of service — first as a leader at the United States Military Academy at West Point, and later as a representative in the legislature. There, he has led the fight against Bobby Jindal’s disastrous failed policies and worked relentlessly for the good of his constituents. He has never given up, and he’s never walked away from a crisis.

“When the sinkhole was swallowing houses, Angelle was running for the door. Louisiana families deserve a leader they can count on, one who will put Louisiana first,” said Stephen Handwerk, executive director of the Louisiana Democratic Party. “Scott Angelle was Bobby Jindal’s top lobbyist leading to the huge cuts to Higher Ed, now he wants us to believe him when he says he will reverse course?  The only man running for governor who has a record of standing up to the failed policies of Jindal and Angelle is John Bel Edwards.”


Scott Angelle Switched His Loyalty from People to Power

BATON ROUGE – Under attack by his current party and plummeting in the latest polls, Public Service Commissioner Scott Angelle is facing new questions about his divided loyalties and potential conflicts of interest. Even while campaigning for governor and ostensibly working for the people of Louisiana on the public service commission, Angelle continues to draw a staggering payoff from an out-of-state company — to the tune of nearly $200K per year, on top of his salary as a “public servant.”

With his campaign for the state’s highest office bought and paid for by the Houston company that’s funding his super PAC, Angelle has made himself utterly beholden to the narrow interests of companies that will undoubtedly have business before the next governor. As Bobby Jindal’s henchman in the legislature, Angelle was notorious for delivering on his boss’s priorities. If out-of-state executives are able to buy him the governor’s race, it’s clear where Angelle’s priorities would lie.

“Five years ago, Scott Angelle jumped ship and switched parties — abandoning Louisiana families and those of us fighting for real Louisiana family values,” said Stephen Handwerk, executive director of the Louisiana Democratic Party. “Angelle switched his loyalty from people to power, and his record on everything from the sinkhole to the BP oil spill make it clear he can’t be trusted with the governor’s office. Voters need a leader who will protect our families and put Louisiana first, not some corporate board from another state.”


John Bel Edwards Commands Debate Stage Amid GOP Mudslinging

NEW ORLEANS – Rep. John Bel Edwards gave a commanding performance at last night’s gubernatorial debate, demonstrating his steadiness and seriousness of purpose while his Republican rivals were consumed in the trivial back-and-forth of intra-party mudslinging. Edwards championed substantive policy proposals and reaffirmed his commitment to putting Louisiana first and getting our state government back to basics. After seven years of failed Republican policies, Louisiana voters are ready to elect a governor who will put people ahead of politics and turn the page on Bobby Jindal and David Vitter’s partisan rancor.

None of the three Republican candidates offered anything new in the way of substantive leadership, or a meaningful change from the failures of the Bobby Jindal administration. John Bel Edwards was the only candidate who offered a clear plan to fix our budgetary nightmare, to restore funding to higher education, and to immediately expand access to affordable healthcare for working Louisianians. As successive polls continue to indicate, Louisiana voters are responding to the values and the leadership Edwards offers— and his debate performance tonight demonstrated why.

“John Bel Edwards walked off that stage as the clear winner,” said Sen. Karen Carter Peterson, chairwoman of the Louisiana Democratic Party. “While the GOP candidates were falling all over each other, pointing fingers and tearing each other down, John Bel was connecting with voters with his message and his vision for the future. He won the debate, and he’s going to win at the ballot box this fall.”


Record of Healthcare Failures Haunts GOP in Governor’s Race

BATON ROUGE – With their national party committed to wasting Congress’ time and the taxpayers money on efforts to rip away health coverage from working Americans, and a state Republican leadership held captive by Gov. Bobby Jindal’s partisan agenda, GOP candidates for governor are struggling to defend their failures on healthcare. Due to the reckless financial mismanagement of Sen. David Vitter’s agents in the legislature, Louisiana taxpayers are being forced to leave money on the table at a time when our state’s economy is facing ruin. The partisan agenda that Vitter and his fellow Republicans are running on puts politics ahead of people, and turns away over $16 billion in federal funding over the next ten years.

Republican failures on healthcare have closed hospitals in Louisiana, and their cynical loyalty to out-of-state special interests stands to deny over 290,000 working Louisianans access to affordable healthcare. Despite their record of failure, GOP candidates for governor want to double down on the same ideas that have brought such misery to Louisiana. David Vitter supports Jindal’s disastrous hospital privatization scheme, while Scott Angelle opposes expanding healthcare access for our most vulnerable fellow citizens. Neither has offered a coherent plan for insuring those left behind by GOP failures.

“The failure of Republican healthcare policies in this state is impossible to ignore,” said Sen. Karen Carter Peterson, chairwoman of the Louisiana Democratic Party. “Louisiana families are looking for a candidate for governor that’s not defined by the failed GOP. None of the Republican candidates is offering a cure, just more of the same sickness that closed Baton Rouge General’s Mid City ER.”


Edwards Leads 2 New Polls, Tops Ticket of Strong LA Dems

BATON ROUGE – Following the release yesterday of two new statewide polls that show Rep. John Bel Edwards pulling ahead in the race for governor, the Louisiana Democratic Party announced their latest endorsements for this fall’s elections. Edwards now tops a ticket of strong Democratic candidates up and down the ballot, and the polls show him in a position to beat any of his three major opponents — with growing support across the state.

In a likely runoff with Sen. David Vitter, whose obscene fundraising operation faltered in the most recent reporting period, John Bel Edwards has taken a commanding lead in the Public Policy Polling data, beating Vitter 50-38 percent in a head-to-head. None of the other candidates in the race have as clear a path to victory over Vitter in the expected run-off. Other statewide candidates newly endorsed by the party, including Geri Broussard Baloney for Attorney General and Charlotte McDaniel McGehee for Comissioner of Insurance, stand to benefit from the growing tide of support for Edwards and his determination to put Louisiana first.

“New polls are coming out every day that are reflecting the reality we’re seeing on the ground: Louisiana families are tired of the same old Republican policies that have failed our state for seven years,” said Sen. Karen Carter Peterson, chairwoman of the Louisiana Democratic Party. “John Bel Edwards is winning the race for governor because people want a leader who will put Louisiana first again. And he tops a ticket with 951 fellow Democrats ready to do the same.”


LDP Endorsements for Lt. Governor, Attorney General, Insurance Commissioner and More

BATON ROUGE – The Louisiana Democratic Party today announced their formal endorsement of the following candidates on the ballot for this fall’s election: Mayor Kip Holden for Lieutenant Governor, Geri Broussard Baloney for Attorney General, Charlie Greer for Commissioner of Agriculture and Forestry, Charlotte McDaniel McGehee for Commissioner of Insurance, and Carolyn Hill for BESE District 8. These endorsements come in addition to the state party’s early endorsements of Professor Chris Tyson for Secretary of State and Rep. John Bel Edwards for the governor’s race. Details as follows:

  • Kip Holden for Lieutenant Governor: The Mayor-President of East Baton Rouge Parish, and the first African-American to hold that office, elected with support from the business community.
  • Geri Broussard Baloney for Attorney General:  Attorney from Garyville, LA who founded an all-female, minority owned law firm in the River Parishes; extensive experience in governmental affairs, honors graduate of Southern and Loyola School of Law.
  • Carolyn Hill for BESE District 8: Social worker focused on mental health issues, seeking re-election after a successful term serving the people of Baton Rouge since 2012.

“In an election cycle where 951 people from across the state have stepped up to run as Democrats in Louisiana, we are excited and proud to announce our formal endorsement of these five exemplary candidates,” said Sen. Karen Carter Peterson, chairwoman of the Louisiana Democratic Party. “Mayor Holden, Geri Broussard Baloney, Charlie Greer, Charlotte McDaniel McGehee and Carolyn Hill will join fellow Democrats up and down the ballot to put Louisiana first, and bring the state back to basics.”


Disrespecting and Ignoring Women: Business As Usual for GOP

BATON ROUGE – When a leading figure in the state Republican Party told a female candidate seeking his endorsement that “a woman’s place is in the kitchen,” he highlighted a growing gap between the state GOP and the women who make up over 53 percent of the state’s voters. Fellow Republicans were quick to jump to his defense, dismissing their female candidate’s outrage as meaningless and insisting such casual chauvinism is “just how people talk.”

That ingrained sexism and disregard for women voters translates into policy decisions for elected Republicans in the legislature, where GOP lawmakers have consistently opposed equal pay for equal work. Their refusal to pay women the same wages for the same work done by a man has left our state at the bottom of the national rankings for gender pay disparity. While the state GOP ignores their own female candidates like Jan Swift in District 45 in favor of less qualified men, state Democrats are fielding four times as many women candidates as the GOP for legislative races this fall.

“The failed record of the Louisiana GOP when it comes to supporting and respecting women voters is no joking matter,” said Sen. Karen Carter Peterson, chairwoman of the Louisiana Democratic Party. “When it comes to matters of substance, like their refusal to support equal pay for equal work, Louisiana Republicans make it clear that these comments really do represent their true feelings. That kind of outdated chauvinism is wrong for Louisiana families, and wrong for the women of our state.”


National Voter Registration Day, Deadline for 2015 Election Nears

BATON ROUGE – Today is National Voter Registration Day, dedicated to celebrating one of our most basic rights as Americans to vote by making a concerted effort to register every eligible citizen. In Louisiana, the day is of special significance as it falls immediately before the final deadline for people to register to vote in this fall’s general election (Oct. 24). In every election cycle, millions of voters are silenced because of missing a registration deadline or not knowing how to register. NVRD, with events planned all over the country, will bring together volunteers and local organizations for a single day of focused, coordinated efforts to register voters and bring them into the process.

For Louisiana voters, the day is a last-minute reminder that the registration deadline to be eligible to vote in the 2015 general election is bearing down. Tomorrow, Sept. 23, is the last possible day voters in the state can register in time to be eligible to vote in this year’s gubernatorial and state legislative races. Offering the opportunity to finally turn the page on seven years of failed Republican policies, this year’s election is absolutely vital to determining the course of Louisiana’s future. And the first step in shaping that future is registering to vote.

“National Voter Registration Day is more important than it’s ever been, particularly given what’s at stake for us in Louisiana this fall,” said Sen. Karen Carter Peterson, chairwoman of the Louisiana Democratic Party. “Every voter in Louisiana should be sure to get registered by tomorrow’s deadline so they can have their voices heard at the polls this fall.”


GOP Education Policies Continue to Betray Our Children, Fail Families

BATON ROUGE – With less than forty days remaining before Louisiana voters go to the polls to render their verdict on seven years of failed GOP policies, Republican candidates up and down the ballot are being dragged down by the weight of their party’s failures on education. Since seizing control of the governor’s mansion in 2008, Louisiana Republicans have cut state funding for education by over 43%. In the same time frame, Louisiana families have seen tuition costs spike— increasing over 51% when adjusted for inflation. In-state tuition for higher education has grown at the fastest rate in the nation in the last five years, and the same failed Republican policies that threatened to bankrupt LSU are still being championed by GOP candidates at all levels.

While John Bel Edwards was in the legislature fighting for Louisiana families, working to expand access to early childhood education and protect funding for schools, his Republican opponents in the race for governor were silent on the sidelines. While Scott Angelle and Jay Dardenne offered nothing in the way of leadership, Sen. David Vitter’s sole contribution was to weigh in against extending a tax holiday for school supplies.

“In the last seven years, Republican policies have failed our children on every level, from pre-K to college,” said Sen. Karen Carter Peterson, chairwoman of the Louisiana Democratic Party. “This fall, voters have the chance to elect a legislature and a governor who will put Louisiana first, and make good on our most important obligation: offering all of our children the chance to get a good education.”


Congratulations to Democrats Returning to Seats Unopposed

BATON ROUGE – With the qualifying period officially closed as of this afternoon, 26 incumbent Democrats in the Louisiana Legislature will return to their seats unchallenged. Their work in both houses, fighting to protect funding for higher education and to restore fiscal responsibility in the face of the $1.6 billion Republican budget debacle was rewarded by the faith of the constituents in their districts— who will return them to carry on the fight in the next session.

Six Democrats will return to the state Senate unopposed, joined by twenty colleagues in the House of Representatives. The returning lawmakers include State Representatives Barbara Norton, H.E. “Gene” Reynolds, Patrick Jefferson, Katrina Jackson, Major Thibaut, Andy Anders, Kenny Cox, Jeff Hall, James Armes, Mike Danahay, H. Bernard LeBas, Jack Montoucet, Sam Jones, Jerry Gisclair, Randal Gaines, Patricia Smith, Walt Leger, Helena Moreno, Neil Abramson, and Edward “Ted” James. Returning State Senators include: J.P Morrell, Karen Carter Peterson, Yvonne Dorsey, Gary L. Smith, Eric LaFleur, and Francis Thompson.

They will rejoin the fight to put Louisiana first again with the full faith and support of the voters in their districts. Democratic leaders in both houses are eager to get back to work, and to get Louisiana back to basics.

“I congratulate all of my returning Democratic colleagues. We will enter next year’s legislative session proud to uphold the faith and support our districts have shown us,” said Sen. Karen Carter Peterson, chairwoman of the Louisiana Democratic Party. “We are grateful for the support and the confidence Louisiana families have shown in us, and we will work every day to be worthy of their trust.”


Vitter’s History of Failure, Past Mistakes Cloud Unloved Campaign

BATON ROUGE – Sen. David Vitter took time away from his apparently endless corporate fundraising efforts today to formally qualify for the governor’s race, and immediately fell back on old habits and dishonesty when questioned about his record. In his feeble efforts to re-write history, Vitter attempted to claim a concrete record of bipartisan accomplishment that does not exist. Accomplishments of any sort are in thin supply on Vitter’s resume, which is overstuffed with grandstanding and Washington in-fighting and lacks any real success for the Louisiana taxpayers he was elected to serve.

As noted by New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu, even after more than a decade of leeching public funds as a creature of Washington, Vitter has been “wholly ineffective” in delivering needed resources for his constituents. Despite the obscene amounts of corporate cash that have been funneled into his campaign by out-of-state special interests, and despite the high name recognition enjoyed by a senator who is no stranger to headline news or late-night punch-lines, the putative front-runner in the governor’s race has yet to secure the endorsement of his own state party.

“We all have a very clear picture of what a Vitter administration would look like if he managed to buy his way into the governor’s mansion,” said Stephen Handwerk, executive director of the Louisiana Democratic Party. “Vitter’s failures and his dishonesty are a matter of public record. The claim he made today is only the most recent example of why we can’t afford to trust him.”


Labor Day Greetings from the Louisiana Democratic Party

BATON ROUGE – As families all over Louisiana mark the end of a challenging summer and the beginning of an exciting school year ahead for many, we call to mind the millions of working men and women throughout our country’s history whose work we honor with the holiday. The long weekend, like the weekend itself, comes as a result of organized labor unions. Fighting for workers’ rights and dignity in the face of exploitive and abusive industry practices, organized labor has made the American dream a reality for many of our working families.

Child labor laws, sick days and bereavement leave, overtime pay, and the forty-hour work-week are only a handful of the workplace protections won by the struggle and organized efforts of labor unions in this country. Their tireless efforts in the face of corporate greed and management exploitation give voice and power to working families and strengthen our economy. Labor unions have been and continue to be the strongest, most successful method for working families to achieve the dignity and security they deserve.

“We are all thankful for the efforts of the working men and women whose labor makes our way of life possible,” said Sen. Karen Carter Peterson, chairwoman of the Louisiana Democratic Party. “Our state is stronger when labor unions are stronger, and the working families that drive our economy are protected. We honor the great work labor unions do for our working men and women, and for Louisiana.”


Tom Schedler’s Voter Purges Shadow Voter Registration Week

BATON ROUGE – As Louisiana marks Voter Registration Week, the incumbent Secretary of State is likely hoping the public will ignore his own ugly record of voter purges over the years. At the behest of Gov. Bobby Jindal and the GOP special interests that have helped fund both their campaigns, Tom Schedler has worked at every turn to suppress minority voters, to dilute their impact and to silence their voices. Schedler’s voter purge efforts have made it harder for citizens to participate in the process, and continue to cost taxpayers time and money.

To date, Schedler’s voter purge schemes have cost Louisiana taxpayers over $1.3 million to cover the expense of lawsuits resulting from his failure to comply with the National Voting Rights Act. The bulk of that money has gone to pay high-priced attorneys who contributed to Schedler’s past campaigns. At a time when our state is reeling from the impact of a $1.6 billion deficit and struggling to even find funding for our presidential primary, Schedler’s mismanagement has put Louisiana families on the hook for his legal bills. This is not what leadership looks like.

“With Louisiana voters mobilizing to make their voices heard and get registered to vote in this fall’s election, it’s important to remember the career politicians who have made a practice of standing in their way,” said Sen. Karen Carter Peterson, chairwoman of the Louisiana Democratic Party. “Tom Schedler has gone out of his way to make it harder for the people of Louisiana to participate. But voters will have that top of mind when they go to elect our next Secretary of State this fall, and will certainly hold Schedler accountable.”


Jindal Growing Desperate as Campaign Craters in Iowa

BATON ROUGE – As his increasingly hopeless campaign for the Republican presidential nomination thrashes toward its inevitable, pitiful close, Gov. Bobby Jindal is growing increasingly desperate for attention and relevance. Taking a cue from his cohort Sen. David Vitter, who resorted to picking fights with New Orleans to distract from his own falling poll numbers, Jindal used the city’s commemoration of Katrina and the levee failures as a pretext for demagoguing on environmental issues.

Jindal’s transparent bid for relevance is yet another instance of the governor putting politics ahead of people, cynically exploiting the still-raw scars of Katrina for negligible political advantage. Despite his ongoing dependence on campaign welfare and his serial abuse of his privileges as governor, Jindal’s campaign continues to slip from also-ran to never-was. Experts from across the political spectrum have now thoroughly dismissed his chances, and debunked every justification for Jindal’s failed vanity campaign. In that light, Jindal’s decision to exploit this week’s memorials for his own gain represents the most craven, cynical excess of a political careerist nearing the end of his ambitions.

“There is not a path to victory for Bobby Jindal in Iowa, and there never was,” said Sen. Karen Carter Peterson, chairwoman of the Louisiana Democratic Party. “As that reality on the ground becomes inescapable, it’s no real surprise that he would lash out at our president. But hiding behind this week’s memorial as an excuse is a new low, even for him.

“It’d be sad if it weren’t so predictable.”


Charlotte McGehee Announces for LA Commissioner of Insurance

BATON ROUGE – Charlotte McDaniel McGehee, a Baton Rouge attorney with a practice in employment litigation and family law, today announced her candidacy in the race for Louisiana’s Commissioner of Insurance. An energetic and committed Democrat, McGehee made her announcement during an in-studio appearance on “The Jim Engster Show,” where she took questions about her hopes for the race and her thoughts on the position.

If elected, Mrs. McGehee would be the first woman in our state’s history to serve as commissioner of insurance. A graduate of Ascension Catholic High School and Southeastern Louisiana University, she studied law at the Southern University Law Center. She has been a practicing attorney since 1999, practicing in Jonesboro for her first year after passing the bar before returning home to Baton Rouge. As Louisiana’s Commissioner of Insurance, she will bring her many years of experience fighting for Louisiana families to bear in the service of state taxpayers.

“Louisiana families deserve a Commissioner of Insurance who will work for them to put Louisiana first, and get our state back to basics,” Mrs. McGehee said. “I’ve been a business owner and an entrepreneur, and a working mother to three young children. I know the challenges our families face, and I’m committed to fighting for them every day.”

Charlotte McDaniel McGehee lives in Ascension Parish with her husband, Troy, and their three children. She is a member of the St. John the Evangelist Catholic Church, where she is an active mentor in the youth ministry program in addition to her work in private practice as an attorney.


John Bel Edwards Champions Equal Pay for Equal Work

BATON ROUGE – As the nation marks Women’s Equality Day tomorrow, voters in Louisiana are called upon to hold their leaders accountable for the failed policies that have left our state ranked last in the nation for gender pay equity. One leader is standing up for Louisiana families to demand equal pay for equal work: John Bel Edwards. He is the only candidate in the race who has voted ‘yes’ for meaningful, enforceable equal pay. His record of fighting for women stands in stark contrast to the field of Republicans vying to be the next Bobby Jindal.

At every opportunity in his long and storied career, Sen. David Vitter has failed the test of leadership and refused to support equal pay for the mothers, sisters and daughters of Louisiana. Vitter’s abuse of their trust and disdain for women’s hard work is a matter of record. Scott Angelle, by contrast, has no record on gender pay equity— but his silence during this year’s legislative session was deafening. Instead of speaking up and offering leadership while the legislature defeated a bill for equal pay, Angelle remained passively on the sidelines.

Lt. Governor Jay Dardenne, who five years ago was campaigning on his promises to work with Jindal, has likewise been complicit in the broken GOP policies that have failed the women of our state.  When John Bel Edwards was fighting for equal pay in the legislature, Jindal’s lieutenant was missing in action. He later told reporters he didn’t even read the bill.

“In the race for governor, only one of the four candidates has shown the kind of leadership and compassion needed to address the gender pay gap and to fight for equal pay for equal work,” said Sen. Karen Carter Peterson, chairwoman of the Louisiana Democratic Party. “John Bel Edwards is a leader who will fight for women voters in Louisiana.”


New Orleans City Council Marks Anniversary of Social Security

NEW ORLEANS – Acting on a motion put forward by Councilmember Jared C. Brossett, the New Orleans City Council today adopted a resolution commemorating August 14, 2015 as the 80th anniversary of the signing of the Social Security Act. Serving as crucial monthly aid and financial protection for millions of elderly and disabled Americans, the Social Security Act was signed into law by President Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1935. In the eighty years since, the program has lifted millions of Americans out of poverty and served as a sacred compact with successive generations of our citizens.

In adopting their resolution, the New Orleans City Council recognized the historic anniversary and joined the Social Security Administration in celebrating decades of success, while looking forward to building for the future. They acknowledged and commended the program for its contributions to the health and welfare of the people of the city, and the country as a whole.

“The Social Security program stands as an example of success. Before the program existed, half of American seniors lived in poverty. Social Security has cut that figure to ten percent,” said Councilmember Brossett. “There’s always more to be done, but it’s important to recognize the great work that has been accomplished by Americans working together.”


Vitter’s Fidelity to Fracking Giants Prompts Opposition to EPA Rule

BATON ROUGE – Leaping to the defense of the corporate special interests who underwrite his obscenely well-funded election machinery, Sen. David Vitter came out in opposition to a common-sense rule that would require companies to stop leaks and capture lost gas. Just as he did in 2010 after the BP oil spill devastated the Gulf Coast, Vitter put politics ahead of people and made it clear his most important constituents are the companies signing his checks.

Having spent the bulk of his time at last night’s “Coastal Candidate Forum”  offering vague lip-service to pressing environmental concerns, Vitter took yet another page from the Bobby Jindal playbook and pivoted immediately to making straw-man arguments in lieu of offering any real solutions. As Louisiana voters learned from Gov. Jindal’s last campaign, a well-designed website document that’s light on specifics is no substitute for leadership. And inveterate submission to GOP corporate donors can have disastrous consequences for state policy.

“On common-sense issues as basic as making rules to stop gas leaks, David Vitter has proven yet again that he can’t be trusted to faithfully protect Louisiana families,” said Stephen Handwerk, executive director of the Louisiana Democratic Party. “If Vitter lacks the moral strength to stand up to corporate interests on something this basic, how can he expect the people of the state to trust him with anything else?”


Friends and Colleagues Mourn Loss of Rep. Alfred Williams

BATON ROUGE – The Louisiana Democratic Party today released a statement expressing deep sadness and sincere condolences for the loss of Rep. Alfred Williams, a Democrat who represented District 61 (Baton Rouge) in the Louisiana Legislature. He was a leader and a stalwart advocate for his constituents, and he served as chairman of the House Labor and Industrial Relations Committee during the 2015 session.

A graduate of Capitol High School in Baton Rouge, Southern University and Southern University Law School, Rep. Williams formerly served as assistant chief administration officer for Baton Rouge Mayor Kip Holden, and had served on the East Baton Rouge School Board.

“Today we join our fellow Democrats and our fellow citizens across the state mourning the loss of a great leader, a respected lawmaker, and a dear friend,” said Sen. Karen Carter Peterson, chairwoman of the Louisiana Democratic Party. “Rep. Williams was the kind of leader we could all admire and look up to, and every day in the session he fought for his constituents and worked to uphold Louisiana family values. He will be deeply missed.”


Sen. David Vitter Continues to Suck Taxpayer Funds, Takes 70K for PAC

BATON ROUGE – Despite having posted obscene fund-raising totals thanks to his support among the super-wealthy special interest crowd, Sen. David Vitter continues to lean on “campaign welfare” wherever possible, building his cynical, hands-off campaign for governor at the expense of Louisiana taxpayers and families. Thanks to the efforts of his high-priced legal team and their elite corporate backers, Vitter was able to force Louisiana taxpayers to cough up nearly $70,000 toward one of his shadowy “political action committees.” In a page ripped from Gov. Bobby Jindal’s partisan playbook, Vitter is petulantly defending the right of faceless corporate paymasters to buy and sell elections in Louisiana and across the country.

And, just like Bobby Jindal’s flailing campaign, Vitter and his operatives continue to pick and choose what parts of the law apply to them. Even with the blank check special interests have given him to try and buy the governor’s race, Vitter is almost literally nickel-and-diming the taxpayers, looking for flimsy excuses to have his constituents foot the bill for his endless campaign mailings.

“With all the obscene amounts of money his campaign has to throw around, and with the infamy of his name recognition all over the media, David Vitter is taking advantage of Louisiana taxpayers to pay the lawyers and special interest groups supporting his campaign,” said Stephen Handwerk, executive director of the Louisiana Democratic Party. “There is something perverse about trying to buy an election, then conniving to force the voters to help pick up your tab.”



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