Maybe Louisiana’s Senate Republicans Are Finally Starting To Get It…

…and if the rumors we’re hearing have any validity there might just be a little bit of rollback on the generosity that the leadership of the Louisiana Senate is bestowing upon the paltry 11 Democrats out of 39 Senators on that side of the state capitol marble.

Last week was one of the most amazing spectacles we’ve ever seen. That paltry minority of 11 senators virtually controlled the entire body in the last full week of this legislative session, and it culminated in threats by Democrats, and specifically the de facto leader of that party in the Louisiana legislature, Cleo Fields, to block the confirmation of a pair of appointed agency heads – Kenny Lofton of the Office of Juvenile Justice and Cade Brumley, the state education superintendent.

Brumley’s case is especially perplexing, as he’s held that job for several years now and is an unqualified success in it. Louisiana has risen some eight spots in educational outcomes since he took over as the education superintendent, and with a huge proportion of the state’s white children attending private rather than public schools, the improvement in those public-school metrics is beneficial disproportionately to the black community. If anybody should be happy with Cade Brumley, one would think it would be Cleo Fields and the rest of the Legislative Black Caucus, whose constituents finally at least have the possibility of sending their children to functional schools to prepare them for upward social mobility.

Assuming, of course, that upward social mobility is something the Legislative Black Caucus values. We’ve long since lost any faith in that assumption.

The caterwauling over Brumley comes chiefly from, as we’ve noted here at The Hayride, his decision to partner with the conservative educational nonprofit Prager U to provide optional assets for teachers around the state to use.

Here’s an example which we’ve chosen for a reason, and we’ll explain that below…

And here’s an example from Prager U’s educational set for kids…

Both of these are spot-on accurate portrayals of Frederick Douglass’ speeches and writings. Douglass was an outspoken defender of the Constitution, and he forcefully made the case that the 3/5ths Compromise, by which modern leftists screech that black slaves were only considered 3/5ths of a person, was a necessary thing to create the union given the realities of the time at which the Constitution was ratified.

Douglass’ general message that the Constitution was a seminal document in world history and the issue confronting the country was living up to its promises was what gave life and fuel to the civil rights movement in this country. It was Douglass’ message that Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., carried when he gave his famous “I Have A Dream” speech on the Washington Mall in 1963, with the passage of the civil rights laws abolishing Jim Crow coming shortly thereafter.

The two videos above are what Cleo Fields and the Democrats in the Senate are calling “racist” and threatening to block Brumley’s confirmation for another term as education superintendent over.

So the question is whether Fields, Joe Bouie, Gary Carter, Sam Jenkins and the others on this warpath are completely ignorant of what Frederick Douglass was about – or worse, that they do know, reject it, and wish to prevent others from telling the truth about Douglass.

We’re pretty sure it’s the latter. What we do know is there is an enormous reservoir of bad faith here, and that every time Republicans extend the hand of friendship to politicians like Cleo Fields they come away sorry.

But there’s a hopeful note to this, which is that in the last couple of days we’ve heard quite a bit of buzz that the 28 Republicans in the Senate have had it with Fields and the Black Caucus.


Discussions are being had about pushing to remove Fields as chair of the Senate Governmental Affairs Committee, and also to dump Bouie from his chairmanship of the Senate Local and Municipal Affairs Committee.

And specifically, that there might end up being a move made to dethrone Regina Barrow, one of the Black Caucus’ senior members, from her position as the Senate President Pro Tem. Barrow was handed that position, which is mostly an honorific without much in the way of specific responsibilities, as a favor by Senate President Cameron Henry, who forced her down the throats of the majority by demanding a unanimous vote.

That irritated a lot of the Republicans, many of whom couldn’t understand why Beth Mizell, who had been Senate President Pro Tem in the previous term, couldn’t continue in that role.

There are more than a few of the Republicans who would like to reinstall Mizell to that seat. Or, alternatively, give Valarie Hodges or Heather Cloud, female conservative senators who are supportive of Gov. Jeff Landry’s agenda, an opportunity to hold it.

And as this legislative session comes to a close Monday evening, it might be worth watching to see if those Republican senators follow through on the rumored move to bounce Barrow.

We’re not predicting that it’ll happen. But there definitely appears to be a good deal of irritation with the attempts by the Black Caucus to disparage and block responsible and successful governance from the Right in Louisiana – and perhaps even a desire to clap back against Fields’ aggressive actions.



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