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Hypocritical Edwards should change his rhetoric

Democrat Gov. John Bel Edwards ought to reconsider pitching stones from his glass house.

Last week, at an annual Aspen Institute meeting, Edwards opined along with other of his party’s governors on the state of politics, in particular on the issue of divisiveness. (This same meeting last year Democrat former New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu didn’t leave early when his staff implored him to return to the city as it flooded.) His words of wisdom: “Folks are just anxious. We ought not to vilify anyone.”

That’s nice, and surely “anyone” means even those Republicans who may run against him next year for his job. Except he doesn’t see it that way, by his past rhetoric.


Edwards to bill taxpayers for more Medicaid?

More Louisiana politicians are discovering you can’t win when it comes to running the state’s two northern safety-net hospitals – and especially taxpayers.

According to the Gov. John Bel Edwards Administration, in the coming weeks resolution will come to the saga of the state’s University Health hospitals in Shreveport and Monroe. The state appeared poised to switch operators from BRF to Ochsner Health Systems.

Under the gun five years ago to outsource operations of state’s charity hospitals after a congressional decision on Medicaid financing would have wrecked the state budget, the Gov. Bobby Jindal Administration quickly had to find private operators for these. Traditional institutional health care providers stepped in – except for north of Alexandria, where only BRF, then known as the Biomedical Research Foundation of Northwest Louisiana, seemed willing.


Edwards watches politicization of state police

If you thought the Louisiana State Police Commission would help to inspire confidence in the integrity in some actions of members of the Louisiana State Police, think again. Meanwhile, Gov. John Bel Edwards stands by and lets it all happen.

In Louisiana, the State Civil Service Commission governs the affairs of classified employees – those hired and fired according to standard merit standards – except for state police (and cadets). The LSPC does that and essentially mirrors the SCSC in membership – six appointees by congressional district by the governor, from three choices provided by the presidents of state’s private colleges (each assigned to one district), and a current trooper elected by his peers.

Last week, the body drastically reduced punishments meted out to troopers who had violated policies during an official trip last fall. They billed taxpayers for thousands of dollars in improper overtime, which when that information emerged led to the departure of former Superintendent Mike Edmonson.