As we’ve noted, there is an unmistakable trend happening within Louisiana’s Democrat Party. It’s something which has been coming for a long time, but recent events have accelerated the increasing political irrelevance of people of pallor who pursue and hold elected office as Democrats.
Revelations that John Bel Edwards has worked to cover up the true nature of the Louisiana State Police’s killing of Ronald Greene, a black citizen who wasn’t a career criminal but a barber who had run a red light and fled from police, by beating him to death on a roadside couldn’t really have come at a worse time. Unless, that is, those revelations had come back in 2019 after the state troopers killed Greene, which was the point of the cover up.
As our readers know, Edwards was facing re-election at that point, and he needed every black vote he could get. So Greene’s killing got swept under the rug and the whole state was fed the lie that Greene died in a car crash rather than being beaten to death by the governor’s own essential praetorian guard.
Edwards rewarded the LSP’s top brass while they were claiming Greene died in a car wreck, despite the fact that, as we now know, he had been informed the morning after Greene died that it was a “struggle” with police which took place just before his death. House Speaker Clay Schexnayder has stated that Edwards shined him on with a story that Greene died in a car wreck, and Schexnayder talked to the FBI about that. The feds are investigating the whole case.
So yesterday, as the water boiled around him, Edwards took to the microphones in an effort to dispel the scandal. Judge for yourself how good a job he did…
We have some thoughts on this, which you might or might not agree with.
First, we can’t wait to see Edwards gone from his current job because to listen to that smacking from his mouth is torture after six years of it. But that’s just us.
Second, he sure seemed nervous. There was word he met with the Legislative Black Caucus before giving this speech, and none of them were standing by him as he spoke – an indication that the meeting didn’t go so well. More on that below.
Third, for John Bel Edwards to run his mouth about racism is some kind of rich. This is a guy who took the black vote so much for granted that he wasn’t even able to be honest about what happened to Greene while he was demanding their votes. And Edwards’ campaign put up signs in black communities that fall accusing his Republican opponent Eddie Rispone of all kinds of obviously-fraudulent horrors: he was going to end food stamps and homestead exemptions, and so on. The lack of respect for blacks, from whom he claimed almost 100 percent support, is patently obvious. Now he says Greene wouldn’t have been beaten to death if he was white and there’s no room for racists on the LSP when there are people involved in that atrocity that haven’t been fired from their jobs two and a half years after the fact. Rings a bit hollow.
Fourth, he’s calling liars everybody with a brain in Louisiana – saying he didn’t know anything about what really happened to Greene until the fall of 2020. He says it was the federal investigation that impeded the public disclosure of the case and that he was the guy who let Greene’s family see the video of his killing. We’re not sure how he expects anybody would believe that. It makes him sound like a blithering idiot.
Fifth, he denies ever telling anyone that Greene died in a car wreck, per the official cover story. Schexnayder would obviously take issue with that statement, as Edwards has just called him a liar. Now, Schexnayder doesn’t have a pristine track record as a particular truth-teller, but the question here is what good it would do Schexnayder to lie about this – he’s not much of a strategist and it’s hard to see how some grand plan of his would be served by making an untrue allegation in this case. And if it turns out that Edwards happened to parrot the car wreck story in a public statement at some point and somebody is able to find that, look out – this will get juicy.
Sixth, and this is so rich it’s unreal, Edwards says “it’s not who I am” that he would cover anything up to save his electoral skin. He claims the proof of this was that the video of Greene’s killing was turned over to the Justice Department, and that happened before the 2019 election. That isn’t much of an exculpatory fact given that the State Police was bound by law to turn that video over – and Edwards had to know a federal investigation would take months or years, and last well past the election, before that material would have been released.
If anybody believed all this, we’d be surprised. As said above, it doesn’t look like the Black Caucus was too impressed with it.
Members of the Legislative Black Caucus demanded transparency in the Ronald Greene death investigation during a closed-door meeting with Gov. John Bel Edwards Tuesday.
“I think the citizens of Louisiana deserve that as well,” Rep. Edmond Jordan, a Democrat, and member of the Legislative Black Caucus said. “Anything less than full transparency is unacceptable.”
Black lawmakers called for the meeting following days of silence from Edwards after the Associated Press was the first to report Friday Edwards was alerted of Greene’s death, who at that time was unnamed, hours after his struggle with Louisiana State Police.
“I think it was a meeting that, you know, we had to have,” Jordan said. “Of course, when anybody brings out allegations about misdeeds, we need to have transparency.”
Seems lukewarm at best, particularly when nobody showed up to support Edwards as he smacked and blustered his way through that “explanation.”
And Greene’s mother, who frankly has been a lot more impressive than Edwards since the truth about her son’s killing began to trickle out, was furious.
The mother of Ronald Greene blasted Gov. John Bel Edwards after he denied any connection with the coverup surrounding the 2019 death of Ronald Greene.
The Black motorist died following a traffic stop by Louisiana State Police near Monroe.
“It was rehearsed… there’s no feelings in anything he said,” said Mona Hardin, Greene’s mother.
The governor made his comments during a news conference Tuesday, Feb.1, where he discussed his knowledge of the Ronald Greene case.
Edwards has faced increasing pressure lately to disclose precisely when he found out that Greene died as a result of his arrest and not from a vehicle crash.
Gov. Edwards confirmed he learned about Greene’s death within hours of it happening, but he says he did not know of the serious nature of what unfolded.
“That is not who I am. I wouldn’t know how to go about it to ask someone to delay an investigation to gain some sort of advantage,” said Gov. Edwards.
Hardin responded strongly to the governor’s comments.
“What happened to Ronnie has been happening continuously. This has been happening continuously. The state doesn’t give a damn,” said Hardin. “It’s like he turned the narrative to say, ‘Poor me. They’re doubting my word’. He has no integrity in his word.”
So what happens now with this? Well, we probably ought to expect Gary Chambers to weigh in. Back in September of 2020, this is what the now-candidate for the US Senate said…
Given that, you’d figure that 16 months later when it comes out Edwards knew all about this stuff and didn’t come clean, and a number of the state troopers involved still have their jobs, Chambers would be dropping bombs all over the place.
Maybe he will. He looks busy…
Touched down in Los Angeles and went straight to meet with largest cannabis growers in the state of California. Louisiana citizens should have the opportunity to own & grow these kinds of businesses. Justice & equity require that we move the entire country forward on pot policies pic.twitter.com/KJZGE7uhGt
— Gary Chambers (@GaryChambersJr) January 29, 2022
Chambers is busy raking in campaign donations from the weed people, something we’re going to talk about a little below. But he did put down the pipe long enough to pop this out…
So @SenJohnKennedy made an ad “targeted” to a certain audience. With racist undertones.
John, I don’t hide when I speak my truth. Why are you?
— Gary Chambers (@GaryChambersJr) February 2, 2022
Seems like Chambers might have lost some weight or something. Anyway, he’s busy accusing Kennedy of racism when he’s already laid down a marker on Edwards. What about it, Gary? Cat got your tongue?
And Edwards’ all-but-endorsed candidate in the race, Luke “The Alpaca” Mixon, also has nothing to say about his buddy in the governor’s mansion…
No. 1, we want a Senator who values truth, democracy, & the rule of law—not one who peddles lies rejected by 60+ courts before voting to overturn an election.
No. 2, we want a Senator who fights for Louisiana families, not offensive headlines & more TV time.
— Luke Mixon (@LukeMixonLA) February 2, 2022
Mixon had to turn in his campaign finance report to the FEC, and one imagines he probably would have preferred not to. It ain’t good. First, we’ll show you John Kennedy’s numbers…
And now Mixon’s…
Mixon would have to raise a million dollars a month more than he spent for the rest of the campaign and he still wouldn’t match Kennedy.
His real concern is matching Chambers, because we’d be drop-dead shocked if the weed people out in California didn’t load Gary up with a whole lot more campaign cash than the paltry 120K the Alpaca has in the bank.
We can’t say that Edwards, the only Democrat in statewide office, is going to be impeached or removed. It’s clear he isn’t going to resign. But it sure looks like he didn’t help himself, and we don’t see anybody rushing to his aid following that rotten press conference. Meanwhile, he called Schexnayder a liar, which is a personal challenge Schexnayder really can’t back down from now.
Mixon didn’t rush to Edwards’ aid, which was obviously not going to happen without Edwards endorsing him officially (and who wants that endorsement now?), but he also didn’t go the other way, which might have helped him with the black vote. He seems a bit like a deer, or maybe an alpaca, in the headlights. This current fiasco has been going on since Friday, after all. You’re running for the Senate seat in Louisiana and this is the hottest thing going on in the state and you have nothing to say about it?
Increasingly it’s looking like the people who are really interesting are not John Bel Edwards or Luke Mixon. Not on the Democrat side. This is about Gary Chambers and the Black Caucus, and how they respond. They’re the future of that party in Louisiana; it’s just a question of when they want to take control of it.