Capitol Access

Weekdays at the bottom of the hour during Morning Edition

Reports on Louisiana politics, government and the people shaping state policy.

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No confetti showers or champagne toasts greeted today’s start of the new fiscal year. Instead, there’s massive uncertainty.

“I’m assuming you’re not betting your house on your forecast?” State economist Jim Richardson asked.

“I’m not betting any of my money on this,” Legislative fiscal anaylyst Greg Albrecht replied, with a rueful laugh.

The Louisiana chapter of the National Federation of Independent Business, a small business advocacy group, hosted a forum for U.S. senate hopefuls Wednesday. In attendance were Congressman Charles Boustany, Congressman  John Fleming, and state Treasurer John Kennedy.

Boustany warned the audience, “Fact of the matter is, things are worse than you think.”

Fleming said his extreme conservative credentials make him the best pick for the Senate seat: “We need somebody who is an outsider, if not an outcast.”

How will Monday’s U.S. Supreme Court decision in the Texas case of Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstadt affect Louisiana’s similar law requiring abortion providers to have admitting privileges?

When state Treasurer John Kennedy addressed the Baton Rouge Press Club Monday,  much of his speech focused on his usual litany.

“You’ve heard me talk about this before,” he said. “We have a spending problem, not a revenue problem.”

He also gave his take on the trio of legislative sessions just ended.

“Governor Edwards won these last 3 sessions,” Kennedy observed. “The governor beat ‘em like a sugar mill mule. Unfortunately, in my opinion, the Louisiana taxpayer lost.”

Sue Lincoln

When the second special session ended late Thursday night, the Louisiana Republican Party immediately sent out a press release declaring “victory”, and calling Democratic Governor John Bel Edwards “defeated”.

Of course, that’s not how he sees it.

“I don’t believe that we have failed,” the Governor said. “I would question some of their motives, rather than my leadership.”

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