Today, Liberal groups and left -leaning reporters are out to slander Governor Jindal’s conservative record of governance. Bloomberg’s Al Hunt, for instance, has a column out with a number of factual mistakes and allegations that don’t tell the whole story.
Let’s take a look out some of Mr. Hunt’s arguments …
Governor Jindal Has Balanced The Budget Every Year In Office, Cut Taxes, Cut Government, And The State Has Received 8 Credit Rating Upgrades
Al Hunt criticizes Governor Jindal for cutting taxes and what he considers as poor budgeting practices. The reality is that liberals don’t like the fact that Governor Jindal drastically cut government and it has worked. Louisiana has more people working than ever, with higher incomes. And government is smaller than it has ever been.
Since 2008, The Overall Louisiana Budget Has Been Reduced From Over $34 Billion In FY 07-08 To $25.1 Billion In FY 15-16, A Nearly $9 Billion Decrease, Or A 26% Reduction. (Division of Administration, FY 2008-2009 Budget, http://www.doa.louisiana.gov/opb/pub/FY09/FY09ExecutiveBudget.pdf; Division of Administration, FY 2014-2015 Budget, http://www.doa.louisiana.gov/opb/pub/FY16/FY16_Executive_Budget.pdf; Reuters, “Louisiana's budget a long-term solution: Jindal's office, Reuters, 6/13/15)
Since 2008, The Number Of State Employees Has Been Reduced From 93,554 To 61,573, A Reduction Of 31,981, Marking A 34% Decrease. (Louisiana Civil Service Commission Report, March 6, 2015 Weekly Report; “Government Workers Down 30K Over 6 Years,” The Advocate, 11/7/14)
The State Employment Level Is At Its Lowest Level In Over Two Decades. (“Government Workers Down 30K Over 6 Years,” The Advocate, 11/7/14)
Louisiana’s Credit Rating Has Improved Drastically Since 2008, With The State Receiving Eight Credit Rating Upgrades Among The Three Major Credit-Rating Agencies (Moody’s, Fitch, And Standards And Poor’s) Over The Past 6 Years. (State Credit Ratings From Standard & Poor’s, 2001-2014, http://www.pewtrusts.org/en/research-and-analysis/blogs/stateline/2014/06/09/sp-ratings-2014, 7/9/14; Moody’s Investors Service, “Rating Changes for the 50 States from 1970,” 1/15/15; “Fitch cites state's "solid financial management" in assigning 'AA' rating to Louisiana GO Bonds,” Division of Administration, 2/16/11)
Today, There Are More People Working In Louisiana Than At Any Previous Time In The State’s History. (Bureau of Labor Statistics, Accessed 5/7/15)
Louisiana’s Private Sector Has Gained A Net 94,600 New Jobs Since January 2008, Making Louisiana No. 2 In The South And No. 7 In The Nation For Private Sector Job Growth Over That Period. (Bureau of Labor Statistics, http://data.bls.gov/pdq/SurveyOutputServlet, Series ID: SMS22000000500000001, Accessed 6/19/15)
Governor Jindal Upset The Apple Cart In Louisiana When He Passed Big Reforms And Cut Government
Mr. Hunt cites three Louisiana “Republicans” in his story who are critical of Governor Jindal’s conservative record. What Mr. Hunt leaves out is that all three of these politicians switched parties to become Republicans around the time or after Governor Jindal took office. Louisiana has trended more Republican since Governor Jindal took office and a big reason for that is Governor Jindal has shown at the state level what true conservative reform looks like when implemented. But, there are many Louisiana politicians who are upset Governor Jindal has brought so many changes to state government and made drastic reductions to the size of government. RedState’s Erick Erickson sums it up best…
RedState’s Erick Erickson: “Jindal is an outsider. … Jindal fixed it [Huey Long’s crumbling welfare state]. For many, it was and is tough medicine.”
Governor Jindal Has Brought Real Education Reform To Louisiana
Mr. Hunt argues Governor Jindal has “fashioned a series of education reforms but didn't adequately fund them,” and “The honors student in biology signed legislation promoting the teaching of creationism in the schools.”
Both of these points are wrong. Governor Jindal has brought transformational reforms to K-12 education. Total funding for K-12 education in the Louisiana budget is more than 15% higher than it was when Governor Jindal took office, and more kids have access to a great education.
Governor Jindal’s Education Reforms Have Turned Around Louisiana’s School Systems:
Since Governor Jindal Took Office, The Number Of Louisiana Failing Schools Has Been Cut In Half. (Louisiana Department of Education, School, District, and State Performance Scores, October 2011)
Now Only 10% Of Schools Operating In New Orleans (2014-15 School Year) Are Considered Failing. This Is Down From 64% Pre-Hurricane Katrina. (“New Orleans public schools pre-Katrina and now, by the numbers,” Times Picayune, 8/29/14)
The State’s High School Graduation Rate Has Increased >From 66% In 2008 To 74.6%, An All-Time High, In 2014. (“Louisiana continues to improve its public high school graduation rate, hit record rate of 74.6% in 2014,” The Advocate, 4/9/15; District and State Graduation Rates, Louisiana Department of Education, http://www.louisianabelieves.com/docs/default-source/data-management/2013-2014-cohort-graduation-rate-file.pdf?sfvrsn=2; )