Editor’s Note: A guest post from Chris Alexander, brother of Hayride columnist Royal Alexander, who heads the newly-formed Louisiana Citizens Action Group.
Louisiana Citizen Advocacy Group is privileged to present the following pertinent items of legislation from the 2022 legislative session, the outcome of that legislation, as well as the Republicans who supported and/or opposed the legislation.
The purpose of the summary is so that the citizens of Louisiana, including and especially the voters who elected the named Republican representatives, are aware of their elected representatives’ votes on critically significant legislation supported and/or opposed by a substantial majority of Louisianans. The bills included are far from exhaustive but were selected in order to highlight the extent to which certain Republican members of the Legislature failed to faithfully represent the will and concerns of their constituents in these critical instances.
LCAG encourages the following summary to be broadly disseminated. The primary purpose of LCAG, and its central focus, is to inform the voting constituents of any Republican elected legislator who fails to act in the interest of his/her constituents with respect to any legislative initiative. Too often, constituents are not aware of what their representatives do, or fail to do, to protect and preserve conservative legislative initiatives.
Many of our elected state Republican representatives have become adept at sabotaging the conservative agenda in ways that are difficult to discern. They conceal their betrayal by killing good legislation in committee, or simply not appearing at committee hearings at all. These actions are not reflected in the standard rating promulgated by conservative publications because these publications record only actions that have proceeded to the full legislative chamber for a full vote. The effect, however, is just as devastating to conservative ideals as if these leaders had cast a negative vote in the full chamber. This is how RINOs (Republicans In Name Only) covertly undermine good legislation while falsely claiming their faithful conservatism to their constituents.
The following summary, as well as forthcoming legislative summaries, will be transmitted directly to the voting constituents in the relevant districts, so that voters can make a truly informed judgment whether these representatives are faithfully representing the issues about which these voters care the most. With your support, LCAG will expose and defeat these elected officials.
HB 640- Wright. Fetal Tissue Bill. This vital legislation, important to voters across Louisiana, would have required a prospective vaccine recipient to be notified whether the vaccine was produced or tested using aborted human fetal derived cells or human embryonic derived cells. The Bill also requires the Louisiana Department of Health to post this information on its website. The Bill died in the Senate Health and Welfare Committee after passing the full House. Despite the critical importance of the legislation, two Republican Senators, Hensgens (Acadia, Lafayette, St. Landry, and Vermillion Parishes) and McMath (St. Tammany and Tangipahoa Parishes), were absent for the Committee vote, although they were present earlier at the Committee roll call. Republican Senator Fred Mills voted to kill the Bill. The Committee enjoys a 5-3 Republican majority, yet sadly the bill was killed, directly or indirectly, by Republicans Hensgens, McMath, and Mills.
HB 117- Echols. The legislation makes it unlawful for the government to prohibit a doctor from prescribing an FDA-approved therapy for off label use. The Bill was necessitated by the draconian actions of the Governor, the CDC, and the Louisiana Department of Health in punishing medical providers who sought to prescribe effective, off label therapeutics in the early treatment of COVID-19. Republican Senate President Page Cortez (Lafayette Parish) did not call the bill to a vote in the Senate for final passage, and so it died without a vote. Republican Cortez allowed the clock to run out without securing the passage of this vital legislation. Every conservative voter in Louisiana, particularly in Cortez’ Lafayette district, must be made aware of this.
HB 811- Miguez. Perhaps the single most important Bill of the 2022 Session pertaining to election integrity, the Bill is known as the “Zuckerbucks Bill.” The Bill provides that no state official responsible for conducting elections in Louisiana may accept any donation from any source for the ostensible purpose of paying costs associated with the conducting of an election. This vital piece of legislation was brought in direct response to the massive amount of cash injected by Mark Zuckerberg into the electoral process in critical swing states in 2020, essentially buying off the election officials in those states and ensuring a fraudulent Biden victory. After blocking the Bill in the Senate until the point at which it required a two-thirds vote for passage (as opposed to a simple majority), Republican Senate President Page Cortez (Lafayette Parish) ensured that there were not enough Senators in the chamber to pass the legislation when he finally called it to a vote. The vote was 25-7 in the Senate. It needed 26 votes, falling 1 vote short of passage. Senate President Cortez, acting in collusion with Republican House Speaker Clay Schexnayder (Ascension Parish) killed this critically important piece of legislation designed to keep private money out of the conduct of our elections. Every voter in each of their districts must be made aware of their colossal failure to serve the people of Louisiana, and will be made so aware.
HB 12.- Frieman. Provides that either House of the legislature may terminate a Governor declared emergency, disaster, or public health emergency, or any part thereof, by majority vote of that House, after consultation with public health specialists. This legislation was important because of the Governor’s tyrannical action in imposing a protracted, misguided state- wide quarantine on healthy individuals, thereby destroying small businesses, infringing the right of religious worship, and contributing to a dramatic increase in mental health issues and suicides across Louisiana. Importantly, the Bill would have allowed the termination of any part of an emergency, disaster, or public health emergency declaration without terminating the entire declaration. Republican Senate President Page Cortez killed this important legislation.
HB 47.- Edmonston. Among the most important Bills of the Session, this legislation requires any Louisiana school or daycare to accept either a written statement from a treating doctor submitted by a student contra-indicating a vaccine, or a written dissent from the student, and also provides that the students’ legal right of exemption be included, in writing, with any communication issued to students or their guardians about immunization requirements. This Bill was hugely important due to the widespread and often coercive effort in Louisiana by the Health Department and the Governor to pressure Louisiana citizens into getting the Covid vaccine, without concurrent disclosure of their right of exemption, of which many Louisianans were unaware. Senate Republican President Page Cortez (Lafayette Parish) refused to call the Bill to a vote, and it died in the Senate, after passing the House and the appropriate Senate Committee.
HB 531- Amedee. This straightforward Bill provides that the legal remedy against a school/daycare for failing to honor a vaccine exemption be included in the same section of law that provides for the exemption itself. After passing the House, the Bill died in Senate Education Committee. Republican Senator Mark Abraham (Acadia, Calcasieu, Cameron, and Jefferson Parishes) made the motion to involuntarily defer the Bill, which had the effect of killing it because Republican Senators Robert Mills (Bienville, Bossier, Claiborne, and Webster Parishes) Beth Mizell (St. Tammany, Tangipahoa, and Washington Parishes) and Kirk Talbot (Jefferson Parish) failed to object. These 4 Republican Senators were decisive in killing this critically important legislation in Committee.
HB 356- Amedee. This legislation expands the Parental Bill of Rights in education to include parental access, upon request, to the actual “lessons” that the teacher prepares for the students in Louisiana public schools. The Bill was offered in response to parents’ concerns about the increasing effort to teach the poisonous doctrine of Critical Race Theory to our students in schools. CRT is the doctrine that holds that America’s founding documents (the Constitution, the Declaration of Independence, and the Federalist Papers), are intrinsically racist, that white people are oppressors by the sole fact of their race, and that black people are victims by the sole fact of their race. The Bill died on the House floor, after passing out of Committee. Only 33 stalwart Republican representatives voted for the Bill. Republican Rep. Buddy Mincey (Livingston Parish) vocally opposed the Bill, along with Republican Rep. Bill Wheat (Tangipahoa Parish). Rep. Mincey is afraid of offending the teachers’ union, and every voter in both Mincey’s and Wheat’s districts should know the action that they took on this important legislation designed to allow parents access to what their children are being taught in school. Parents have every right to this information, and it is known that there is a direct correlation between parental involvement and higher student performance in school.
HB 594- Amedee. This legislation was among the most important of the 2022 Session. It provides that every Louisiana citizen enjoys bodily autonomy and has the fundamental right to make his/her own health care decisions, including the right whether to be vaccinated. The Bill prohibits the government from interfering in, or discriminating against, the exercise of this core right of bodily autonomy. The Bill included a penalty provision. The Bill was inexplicably killed in the House Health and Welfare Committee by a vote of 11-5. Republican Chairman Larry Bagley (Caddo, Desoto, and Sabine Parishes) along with Republican Representatives Thomas Pressly (Bossier and Caddo Parishes) Christopher Turner (Lincoln and Union Parishes) and Wayne McMahen (Bossier and Webster Parishes) all voted against this vital legislation, supported by a substantial majority of Louisiana voters. If these named Republicans had supported the Bill, it would have passed out of Committee in a 9-7 vote and moved to the full House. After the history of government coercion and misinformation associated with the Covid vaccine, and the increasing evidence of severe adverse effects from the vaccine, it is reprehensible that these Republicans killed this Bill. Every voter in their respective Districts should be made aware of this.
HB 427- Amedee. The Bill prohibits the administering of any vaccine to a minor at school or at a school related event without written parental consent, verified by telephone. After passing in the House (despite a no vote from Republican Representative Barbara Frieberg, Baton Rouge), this commonsense legislation died on the Senate floor on the last day of the session because Republican Senate President Page Cortez (Lafayette) refused to call it to a vote. Republican Cortez killed the Bill.
HB 428- Amedee. The legislation prohibits public educators from making recommendations for any vaccine or medical procedure and requires that this must initiate from a medical provider. Both Republican Representative Buddy Mincey (Livingston Parish) and Republican Representative Thomas Pressly (Caddo and Bossier Parishes) strongly opposed this legislation on the House floor, where it died.
HB 984- Amedee. The legislation would have designated at least one school board meeting per month to have a general public comment period that is not limited to any items on the agenda. It also provides that if at least 15 residents of the district request that any item be included on the agenda at a school board meeting, the item must be included on the agenda within 60 days of receipt of the 15th written request. The Bill was necessitated due to the non-responsiveness of many school boards to the concerns of parents, and the lack of opportunity for parents to be heard before these Boards. The Bill was further necessitated by the fact that some school boards in the state had begun approving policies banning public comments at their meetings. Republican representative Buddy Mincey (Livingston Parish) strongly opposed the Bill with the specious excuse that it would make the school board meetings “contentious and long”, as though this Bill would do anything to diminish a school board’s power to enact reasonable regulations. Republican Mincey forgot, as he tends to do, that the School Boards are paid by the taxpayers and are directly answerable to us.
HB 1022- Amedee. The Bill would have created a cause of action against any entity who mandates, recommends or administers any product for which the manufacturer of that product is immune from civil liability. The Bill also would have required disclosure to the prospective recipient that the manufacturer is immune from civil liability. This important consumer protection Bill was defeated on the House floor. Republican Representative Pressly (Caddo and Bossier Parishes) led the charge against the Bill. As it stands now, if an entity mandates a vaccine that causes harm to a Louisiana citizen, that citizen has no opportunity for civil or monetary recovery.
HB 165- Zeringue. The offshore Windmill Bill. Despite being unable to pass vital legislation important to the citizens of Louisiana, HB 165, which designated 25,000 acres of offshore Louisiana water for the development of green energy wind turbines, passed both the House and Senate and is now law in Louisiana. This misguided Bill co-authored by Republican representatives Jerome Zeringue (Lafourche and Terrebone Parishes) and Joseph Orgeron (Jefferson and Lafourche Parishes) will have a devastating effect on Louisiana’s environment, will increase the costs of fuel, and will facilitate massive federal taxpayer subsidies to green energy companies. The Bill also ignores the dismal history of failure in other places where wind energy of this sort has been implemented. Additionally, not one Louisiana Republican representative or senator objected to the potential conflict of interest of the Bill’s Co-author, Republican representative Joseph Orgeron. Orgeron owns 2nd Wind Marine, LLC, which stands to make a huge amount of money from this legislation, and in fact has built large super-feeder vessels for the purpose of transporting the turbine components to their offshore site pre-construction. LCAG believes that this is a textbook example of the type of self-dealing that Louisiana citizens have come to disdain in their elected leaders. Every voter in both Zeringue’s and Orgeron’s districts should be made aware of this when they vote.
It is past time to hold our elected representatives responsible any time they fail to honor the will and concerns of their constituents, as opposed to the special interests to which too many of them seem beholden. Always remember they work for us, they derive their power from us, and they are accountable to us. And we must act accordingly, if we are to preserve the liberties of a free republic. To that end, please share this summary with your family and friends throughout Louisiana and remember it when you vote. If you do your part, we will change our state for the betterment of all of our citizens. LCAG is committed to this objective.
Christopher Alexander, Sr.
Louisiana Citizen Advocacy Group, LLC