How did a guy from New Orleans, whose family did not seem to possess any known or public anger against minorities become such a vehement white supremacist and international critic of Jewish people and the State of Israel?
The first time I encountered David Duke was in college. He had begun to make a name for himself on the LSU campus, taking part in its free-speech alley. I was a student at the University of New Orleans and one night, he spoke to an auditorium-packed room on campus. I was personally very impressed with his intelligence, his oratory skills, but very concerned about what I considered to be his outlandish views on race and religion.
David Duke has certainly become a household name in the United States and in some respects, worldwide.
He is an integral part of an angry moment in Louisiana and America’s history.
So, who is he? How did he become such a virulent white supremacist and anti-Semite? What do we know about him that might be helpful to understand others who peddle in the far-right wing (or even far-left) swirl?
Finally, after three special sessions and a regular one, it's time to relax, do the things that hard-working legislators (and governors) long to do after a long grueling hard-fought battle over the budget--pick up the pieces of one's life and, if at all possible, spend quality time with family, check out those hires burning at the office and hopefully take a moment of leisure.
The fiscal cliff, that seemingly insurmountable object in front of every legislative session since Bobby Jindal took his shot at taming the budget, is fixed. Yes, fixed. At least, on paper and hopefully, in reality, until perhaps, the next mid-decade.
The Louisiana legislators and governor, who have spent almost every day in session since mid-February of this year, have settled upon a budget deal that reduces the sales tax from five cents to 4.45 cents. Today, The Advocate reporter Tyler Bridges, who has been there with the legislators as each tick has tocked on the capitol clock, took a few moments to discuss with me--the session and the budget agreement. The interview occured via Facebook and Twitter Live.
Below is the video transcript of the relevant portions of the interview with Bridges, who will also soon post a "behind the budget deal scene" article for The Advocate.
Should the Speaker of the Louisiana House of Reprentatives resign as a result of a failed fiscal session? Is it time for the Republicans to start directing their energies to replace Louisiana governor John Bel Edwards, now that the state spent nearly one million dollars for the recent special session, with nothing to show for it?
The Louisiana legislative process crashed with no fix for the massive fiscal cliff. What happened and where do we go from here?
This was the gist of the questions I had for Tyler Bridges, reporter for The Advocate, who covers the Louisiana legislature and politics for the newspaper. Now that the legislative fiscal session 2018, called by Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards, is history and all that’s left for now, is the blame game. It is obvious that DC politics has hit Louisiana. Republicans and Democrats don’t trust one another. Not that this comes as a surprise. But what might be the impact to the state and vital institutions, now that the impasse has been recorded?