David Vitter

S. Lincoln

The Joint Legislative Budget Committee meets this morning to vote on the Jindal administration plan to solve the current budget shortfall. That’s got David Vitter’s and John Bel Edwards’ knickers in a knot.

Vitter says it solves nothing, describing the administration’s plan as, “More patching, more moving money around, more depending on very speculative money; and for us to be sweeping that to solve our problems now, I think is irresponsible.”

Edwards agrees.

S. Lincoln: screenshot from debate broadcast

The Revenue Estimating Conference met Monday, acknowledging oil and gas prices, sales tax and corporate tax collections are far below what was anticipated.

Legislative fiscal analyst Greg Albrecht summed it up, saying, “We’re a long way from hitting the total forecast.”

The state is $370-million away, in the current fiscal year.  The biggest hole is created not by oil prices, but by corporate taxes. The explanation offered was businesses had rushing to claim tax credits before legislative reductions kicked in.

Frank Barnett

Just 5 days left till Saturday’s runoff election, and in the past week gubernatorial candidate David Vitter has become more visible, including speaking with two faith-based communities late last week.

Vitter spoke at Jefferson Baptist in Baton Rouge Thursday evening – a solo appearance -- put on in part by the Louisiana Family Forum. There the Republican addressed religious freedom.

Courtesy LPB

They talked over each other, and the moderators. And by the end of Tuesday night’s debate between David Vitter and John Bel Edwards, one thing was abundantly clear: the two candidates for governor despise each other.

“John Bel, you’re just wrong,” Vitter flung at his opponent.

“Senator Vitter, you’ve been lying sideways in the public trough since 1992,” Edwards said.

Sue Lincoln

 When David Vitter and John Bel Edwards faced the Baton Rouge Press Club Monday, there wasn’t much discussion of what they would each do as governor. Instead, talk was mostly about the campaign itself. Vitter was asked about Edwards’ latest ad.

“I failed my family 15 years ago. Everyone knows that,” Vitter said. “The good news is, I asked for and received forgiveness.”

“The issue isn’t just family, and it isn’t just forgiveness,” Edwards responded. “His performance of his public duties were compromised, as well.”