Some of you might look at today’s Terrible Bill O’ The Day and conclude we’re just mean. We aren’t, though – we’re tired. And there’s a difference.
We’re tired of busybody legislators – or more to the point, legislators who want to appear as busybodies when what they’re really doing is to game the system to score more and more power for them and their pals – bringing bills that outwardly appear to be do-gooder legislation.
And Rep. Cedric Glover’s HB 553 is a perfect example. Read it and you’ll likely say, “Well, sure – this is a good-government measure.” Here’s what it does…
Abstract: Adds a member to the State Bd. of Election Supervisors who shall be a voter with a disability appointed by the governor.
Present law provides for membership of the State Bd. of Election Supervisors to be composed of the following eight members:
1) The lieutenant governor.
2) The secretary of state.
3) The attorney general.
4) The commissioner of elections or a designee of the secretary of state.
5) One member of the Clerks of Court Assoc.
6) One member of the Registrars of Voters Assoc.
7) One member appointed by the governor from a list of nominees submitted by the presidents of Centenary College, Dillard University, Louisiana College, Loyola University, Tulane University, and Xavier University.
8) One member of the Police Jury Assoc. of La.
Proposed law retains present law and adds a ninth member who shall be a voter with a disability appointed by the governor from a list of nominees submitted by the executives of Disability Rights La., the Split Second Foundation, the La. Statewide Independent Living Council, the La. Association for the Blind, the La. Developmental Disabilities Council, and Arc of La. No such nominee shall be an elected or appointed public official. The term of office of the appointed member is concurrent with the term of the governor making the
appointment. The appointment by the governor shall be submitted to the Senate for confirmation.
Present law provides that the members of the board shall not receive any compensation but shall be reimbursed for reasonable expenses incurred in the performance of the work of the board.
Proposed law retains present law.
You’ll notice that the list of appointees to the Board of Election Supervisors is rather bizarre as to where they come from. How is it that the private colleges get to name somebody to that board and the Louisiana Family Forum or LABI don’t? And why the Police Jury Association and not, for example, the assessors? There isn’t a lot of rhyme or reason to it.
So maybe Glover, who was a former failed mayor of Shreveport before his current stint in the legislature, can be excused for trying to add a member to that board from a list of those groups for the disabled – which are, by the way, mostly left-wing outfits catching funding from sources most Republicans would not approve of.
Is there a problem with access to voting for Louisiana’s handicapped? When we vote we see disabled folks at the precinct all the time and it doesn’t look like they have any problems. And why is carving out a spot on the Board of Election Supervisors the answer for that?
It’s shaky, at best. And here’s the thing – Cedric Glover doesn’t get the benefit of the doubt here. Not in the least.
We suspect this is about trying to pack the Board of Election Supervisors and disrupt the next governor’s ability to assist in making changes to uphold election integrity. While this bill grants the governor the ability to make new appointments at the beginning of his or her term, in practice it takes forever to fill all the boards and commissions – and what that means is the holdovers just linger until their replacements are named.
So this will put somebody friendly to John Bel Edwards on that board who’ll be there well after Edwards is gone.
Not to mention all of the lefty outfits who get to put the list of nominees together will insure the next governor is stuck appointing a Democrat to that ninth Board of Election Supervisors seat.
We all know how this works.
If Glover was operating in good faith he’d say the governor has to appoint somebody who’s handicapped to a seat on that board and he wouldn’t bother with demanding that somebody be vetted by his favorite disabled groups. But isn’t, and so we’re calling him out on it by awarding him today’s Terrible Bill O’ The Day moniker.