Yes, John Bel Edwards Vetoed The Girls’ Sports Bill

Did you really expect anything different? He said he would veto it, and he vetoed it.

Why are you surprised?

So we have to import cases from the Californias and Massachusettses of the world before we can take a stand on an issue which is clearly on the radar of the voters of this state in order to make Edwards happy?

Please. We know you’re going to veto the bill. At least do us the courtesy of not insulting our intelligence after you’ve vetoed it.

The real question is whether Louisiana’s legislative leadership, and specifically House Speaker Clay Schexnayder and Senate President Page Cortez, has the stones to call a veto override session and earn a victory over Edwards and the national Democrat regime. The bill in question, SB 156, passed with 78 votes in the House and 29 in the Senate; all it needs is 70 and 26 to override a veto.

But we wouldn’t be too optimistic about a veto override session – not just for this bill but for the constitutional carry bill and Rep. Blake Miguez’ Zuckerbucks bill banning private donations to public elections offices. Because Edwards didn’t veto something else

Gov. John Bel Edwards has signed key pieces of a complicated tax swap plan to disentangle Louisiana’s income tax collections from federal tax payments, but it still needs voter approval this fall to take effect.

The proposal awaiting a decision on the October ballot would get rid of personal income tax and corporate tax deductions for federal income taxes paid in exchange for lowering the state’s income tax rates. Louisiana also would permanently eliminate the corporate franchise tax for small businesses and lower the tax rate for others.

The Democratic governor announced late Monday that he had signed the bills. But the package requires the constitutional amendment on the ballot to pass before the tax swap can happen.

Louisiana allows taxpayers to deduct the federal income taxes they pay from the computation of state income taxes. When federal income taxes go up, Louisiana collects less in state taxes. When federal income taxes go down, state tax collections rise.

The legislation would undo that link, a long-sought goal of tax experts, economists and others.

In exchange for losing the tax break, taxpayers would receive a 1.85% personal income tax rate on the first $12,500 of net income, down from 2%. The tax rate for the next $37,500 of income would fall from 4% to 3.5%, and the rate for income above $50,000 would drop from 6% to 4.25%.

On the corporate side, the proposal would scrap current rates that range from 4% to 8%. In exchange for the lost tax break, the state would charge companies a 3.5% tax rate on the first $50,000 of earnings; 5.5% on earnings above $50,000 and up to $150,000; and 7.5% on earnings above $150,000.

That tax reform package was Schexnayder’s baby, and the word at the Capitol is that a deal was cut – Edwards would sign the tax bills, and in return there would be no override session when he vetoed the girls’ sports bill, the constitutional carry bill and the Zuckerbucks bill.

In other words, it’s not that Louisiana’s “Republican”-led legislature can’t walk and chew gum at the same time, making economic policy reforms while also protecting our liberty and values, it’s that it chooses not to.

Hopefully that impression is wrong and Schexnayder and Cortez will call the override session into being. Now that they have Edwards’ signature on the tax reform bills they can do it without risking too much in the way of blowback from the governor. We’d love to see it, but we’re not so optimistic.

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