Actually, in the case of Democrat Edwards, it was continued confirmation. On this occasion, it came down to a matter of lack of trust that he would not hit Louisianans with massive tax increases to fund his never-ending spending promises despite his claiming he won’t raise taxes. Let’s see, he wants to excise entirely the portion gasoline tax dollars that goes to the state police, costing $60 million this year although by law to be reduced in future years (with this representing 0.5 percent of the entire roads backlog, so it really doesn’t solve anything). He wants to double the Earned Income Tax Credit, meaning about $50 million in forgone revenue collection. He wants to equalize self-generated revenues of Louisiana higher education with the taxpayer’s proportion, which this year would have meant finding another $103 million (and he pledges no more tuition increases, so this figure will go higher). He wants to expand Medicaid immediately, which for FY 2016 would cost the state at least $18 million but by FY 2030 is forecast to cost an additional $574 million annually.
Just what he promised on these items during the debate equals at least $231 million more for a state, in order to balance its budget, that this year raised taxes more than three times that amount, of which he voted in favor of over $400 million in additional tax liability that will be experienced directly by or passed on to consumers and by income-earning individuals. All along, Edwards has held out the paring of tax exemptions, curiously disregarding that these do often entail tax increases (when not in the form of rebates), as the uber-solution to what ails the budget. It’s nothing more than an appeal to Louisiana’s populist history, promising all sorts of things as if it were a gift to the people but hiding the fact that they ultimately pay for it. You can’t trust a guy who doesn’t tell you that upfront and continues to insist he won’t raise taxes, and that disqualifies him from any serious consideration for the office.