The overwhelming tide of legislation in this first session of the new order of things in Louisiana has focused on exclusively partisan, ideological policy choices. Pragmatism is practically dead. And why? Because Conservative Republicans don’t know how to govern in democratically elected government. That authoritarian streak has become so pervasive that rigorous, objective study of policy outcomes is no longer necessary. Just do as you feel. All of this explained in one paragraph:
“The working majority now is conservative Republicans,” Cross said. “The focus is now on their ideology.”
Even while Louisiana legislators were hustling through a massive education overhaul, despite hundreds of schoolteachers chanting their opposition on the State Capitol steps, they were also advancing other measures — over loud objections.
One bill that eventually could allow firearms to be carried just about anywhere was opposed by prosecutors, police and higher education officials, but passed out of committee easily. Another bill aimed at removing “special protections” against discrimination government agencies have given gay people.
“We’re seeing what was rhetoric for national politics really make inroads at the state level and there hasn’t been much pushback,” Cross said. “At least for the near future, through the end of Gov. Bobby Jindal’s terms, that is the direction this state is headed.”
And those are your political horizons, folks.
by Lamar Parmentel, chief custodian of The Daily Kingfish
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