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New Orleans Attorney Profiles 2015
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Stephanie Grace: Louisiana lawmakers appear to be reaching their limits with Gov. Bobby Jindal

Advocate staff file photo by BILL FEIG -- Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal.

Remember all those lessons from grade school about the separation of powers? You know, the ones about how the executive and legislative branches of government are supposed to be independent and co-equal, part of a system of checks and balances designed to make sure that no one branch amasses too much control?… Continue reading →

Stephanie Grace: Louisiana's GOP governor hopefuls are showing up in unexpected places ... to court Democrats

Pictured from left, David Vitter, Jay Dardenne, Scott Angelle and John Bel Edwards

If Louisiana had a typical party primary system, Democratic gubernatorial candidate John Bel Edwards would be talking to Democrats right now, and Republicans David Vitter, Scott Angelle and Jay Dardenne would be making their case to GOP voters. That’s not the way things work in the open primary system, of course. One dynamic is that, while Democrats… Continue reading →

Stephanie Grace: Bobby Jindal losing his touch, has gone ‘from rising star to somewhat pathetic figure’

Advocate staff photo by ADAM LAU -- Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal speaks after being sworn in during inauguration at the Old State Capitol in Baton Rouge on Monday, Jan. 9, 2012.

After reading Sunday’s front-page Washington Post profile of Gov. Bobby Jindal, I’m almost tempted to feel sorry for the guy. Okay, not really. Jindal’s got nobody but himself to blame for his dreadful poll ratings at home and his low ranking in — and sometimes absence from — presidential surveys. He’s put his national ambitions… Continue reading →

Stephanie Grace: Lawmakers rooting against their constituents

Is it too much to ask that Louisiana’s officials in Washington not root against their own constituents? Because that, at bottom, is what several members of the state’s congressional delegation boasted of doing when they cheered on a legal challenge to the Affordable Care Act provision that allows millions of Americans — including lots of Louisianans —… Continue reading →

Stephanie Grace: Bobby Jindal's budget plan concocted, contorted to allow him tax-hike deniability

Ever since Gov. Bobby Jindal issued his proposed $24.6 billion state budget last week, the phrase “money laundering” has been running through my head. That’s not quite the right term, and what Jindal proposes is not illegal. But is there such a thing as label laundering? If so, that’s one way to characterize the… Continue reading →

Stephanie Grace: David Vitter is 'absolutely a problem' for Bobby Jindal's presidential campaign, and here's why

U.S. Sen. David Vitter; Gov. Bobby Jindal

Pretty much everyone who follows Louisiana politics knows that the state’s two leading officials, Gov. Bobby Jindal and U.S. Sen. David Vitter, aren’t allies. They’re not even “frenemies,” two people who don’t like each other but manage to work together toward common goals. Nope. The only apparent connections between these two are the… Continue reading →

Stephanie Grace: Petal an example of why Louisiana film tax credits need better monitoring

If Malcolm Petal was a character in some big-budget caper film — perhaps even one of the numerous movies shot in Louisiana since the state instituted its generous production tax credit — he might well be the protagonist. Movies are big on anti-heroes these days, and Petal, a lawyer-turned-convicted-crook who admitted to ripping off the film… Continue reading →

Stephanie Grace: Jindal seems like he’s just passing through, but it didn’t always seem that way

Governor Bobby Jindal (R-LA), a potential 2016 GOP candidate, speaks at a APPs State luncheon discussion on Common Core at the Mayflower Hotel on Feb. 5, 2015 in Washington, D.C. (Olivier Douliery/Abaca Press/TNS)

Not long ago, prompted by a call from a national political reporter seeking to understand likely presidential candidate Gov. Bobby Jindal’s rise in Louisiana, I pulled out an old profile I wrote during his first campaign. And I have to confess that reading it again, after all these years and with so much water under the bridge, was… Continue reading →

Stephanie Grace: Tom Benson, Brian Williams, Bobby Jindal, the Landrieus ... New Orleans' Mardi Gras floats 'gave everyone an awful lot to laugh at'

Advocate staff photo by MATTHEW HINTON -- The Krewe of Muses' "spin the bottle" float skewers the Benson family inheritance scandal in New Orleans, La., on Thursday, Feb. 12, 2015.

What’s that they say? If you don’t laugh, you’ll cry? Well, Louisiana in general, and New Orleans in particular, have experienced so much angst since last Mardi Gras that this year’s Carnival floats gave everyone an awful lot to laugh at. Always a fascinating measure of the collective zeitgeist, the 2015 satire season hit all the… Continue reading →

Stephanie Grace: Like George Costanza, Jindal finds his worlds colliding

“It’s just common sense,” a supremely exasperated George Costanza insisted during a classic episode of the old “Seinfeld” sitcom, after learning that his girlfriend Susan has started hanging out with his platonic pal Elaine. “Everybody knows you gotta keep your worlds apart.” When worlds collide, the punchline goes, “it blows… Continue reading →

Stephanie Grace: Cassidy defending a Landrieu legacy

How’s this for a re-election slogan? “Bill Cassidy, protecting Mary Landrieu’s legacy since 2015.” Sorry folks, couldn’t resist. The irony is simply too delicious. How else to characterize Louisiana’s newly elected Republican senator, the very guy who won by painting the Democratic incumbent as a patsy for President Barack Obama, fiercely defending his ousted… Continue reading →

Stephanie Grace: David Duke once again shows he’s ‘a petulant, resentful, racist, anti-Semitic, self-regarding and seriously thin-skinned low-life’

U.S. Rep. Steve Scalise, left, and David Duke

So now David Duke is threatening to run against Steve Scalise. Talk about ungrateful. If anything, the former state representative, Ku Klux Klan leader, and way-too-close-for-comfort gubernatorial candidate should be thanking the Metairie congressman for inadvertently shining the spotlight back in his direction. Duke’s been old news for more than a decade now,… Continue reading →

Stephanie Grace: State's budget problems can't wait for Jindal to leave

Advocate staff file photo by BILL FEIG -- Aerial of the new State Capitol building and grounds.

In speaking to lawmakers over the last couple of years, I’ve heard a common refrain from both House and Senate members, Republicans and Democrats: Just wait until Gov. Bobby Jindal leaves office. Then — finally, they say — they’ll be able to stop factoring Jindal’s national ambitions into… Continue reading →

Stephanie Grace: Bobby Jindal can't do a thing about same-sex marriage possibly becoming law; that's the way it should be

Associated Press file photo by JONATHAN BACHMAN -- Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal.

If the U.S. Supreme Court wraps up this year’s session by declaring same-sex marriage a constitutional right — a scenario far more probable than not, most knowledgeable observers predict — tourism officials in New Orleans will be ready. According to a recent Gambit story, the New Orleans Tourism and Marketing… Continue reading →

Stephanie Grace: The bigger Bobby Jindal tries to go, the smaller he looks in quest to get attention he craves

Gov. Bobby Jindal may have billed his European swing as an economic development mission on behalf of Louisiana, but his primary agenda has been obvious to anyone who’s turned on a television set, logged onto the Internet or followed his PR operation via email or social media. Far more than state business, Jindal’s trip was all… Continue reading →

Stephanie Grace: Here's the gameplan Jay Dardenne, Scott Angelle, John Bel Edwards might use against David Vitter in race for Louisiana governor

When U.S. Sen. David Vitter used the opening forum of the 2015 gubernatorial campaign season to tout his leadership on a bipartisan congressional highway bill and vow to press ahead on a follow-up, one of his rivals seized on the opening. “This is precisely why we want to you stay,” Lt. Gov. Jay Dardenne quipped,… Continue reading →