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Uncertain Shreveport race can make history

With fewer than two weeks to the election and early voting already underway, nobody really can guess whether the Shreveport mayor’s contest will make history.

That’s because, even at this late date, no independent public polling of the race has occurred. Featuring several candidates, the presumed major ones are incumbent Democrat mayor Ollie Tyler, Democrat Parish Commissioner Stephen Jackson, Democrat lawyer Adrian Perkins, Republican businessman Lee Savage, and Republican retired law enforcement officer Jim Taliaferro.

The mix of nonpublic and politically-affiliated polls seem to confirm this. They agree only in that Tyler leads the way, with Perkins and Taliaferro somewhat behind, and Jackson and Savage further back. One surrogate for electoral support brings partial confirmation, in that Tyler and Perkins far and away led in the last batch (30 days prior to the election) of campaign finance reports, while the other three collectively hadn’t even approached what either of those two individually has raised.


Greed drives putting wants over children's needs

And this explains why the East Baton Rouge Parish School System wallows in mediocrity while other Louisiana school districts pass it by.

Yesterday, a few hundred system employees vowed to walk out of classrooms on, fittingly, Oct. 31. These people, marshalled by organized labor, said they would do so in protest of Industrial Tax Exemption Program awards to ExxonMobil, if made at an Oct. 30 meeting of the state’s Board of Commerce and Industry. However, the BCI doesn’t have those requests on its agenda for that meeting, meaning a walkout might occur at a later date after it finally does take up the matter.

Leftist groups blame these exemptions, which could run into the millions of dollars annually of foregone revenue for the system, for preventing salary increases. The latest (2015) data of classroom teacher salaries in the system for nine months was $51,754 (excluding benefits except for professional development funds), or almost $6,000 higher than the state’s median household income for that year.


Vote for first three, against last four LA measures

Over the next month, Louisianans will vote on six statewide amendments and one common local ballot measure. Here follows a summary of each and recommended voting.

Amendment #1 would prohibit felons from public office for five years after serving a sentence. This puts back into place an amendment nullified by Supreme Court ruling on a technicality, except that one lasted 15 years and this actually expands the prohibition to appointed individuals and in local governments as well.

Five years to earn back public trust seems appropriate, as serving in office is a privilege. A vote for will reestablish something similar to what the state operated under for nearly two decades.


Flawed judicial decision oversimplistic, imprudent

Fourteen years later, the wisdom of north Louisiana voters became more apparent when 11th Judicial District Judge Stephen Beasley issued a flawed ruling on a hot issue.

Beasley, who ran as a Democrat for the Second District of the Louisiana Supreme Court in 2004 and for reelection to his current post in 2008, but as a no-party candidate in 2014, sided with the plaintiff in a case concerning the state’s non-unanimous jury standard. At present, concerning major crime only 10 of 12 must vote for guilt except, by the state’s criminal code, for a crime that can carry a capital sentence. A constitutional amendment to be decided next month could change that to requiring unanimity.

In this case, the plaintiff had netted a conviction with the 11 white jurors in the majority, but the lone black juror dissenting. His lawyer Richard Bourke, better known for his strident opposition to capital punishment, also has for an extended period argued against the constitutionality of the non-unanimity requirement.