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  • Writer's pictureMatthew Rodgers

Even in Local Politics, the Incompetency of the Duopoly Persists

On March 26th, 2022 an election for mayor in Pineville, Louisiana will be held. This election, like the many others I’ve seen in my local politics, is another election about electing an incompetent and corrupt politician who whispers sweet nothings into the people's ears. This comes as no surprise as Louisiana is almost famous for how politics are handled in the state as one of the most popular former Governors of Louisiana, Senator Huey P. Long was notable for the amount of threats he would sling at his political rivals. He would also pay or reward many state officials to vote for bills that Huey supported or needed to be passed. Despite his political maneuverings and possibly because of them, Huey Long was assassinated as he was at the capitol building in Baton Rouge to pass a redistricting bill that would oust Judge Benjamin Henry Pavy. For context, Mr. Pavy was a state judge that strongly stood against Long's policies in Louisiana and the US Senate. After Senator longs assassination, many politicians in Louisiana wanted to capture his power and enthusiasm, and so a long string of crony politics would sweep Louisiana to this day.

Recently in the past year, the Governor of Louisiana John Bel Edwards has had many demands from citizens to fellow politicians to resign or step back. Many point to the recent Gubernatorial election scandal where Edwards had information about a police killing of an African American that possibly had ties to Edwards but instead lied to the family for the cause of death and delayed a probe into the killing until after the election ended. This outraged many people from his cabinet and some even left his campaign. Many people believe he withheld information about this killing so he could retain the very large African American voting base within Louisiana to help hold out on reelection. I myself am one of those individuals.

But to say modern corruption started with Senator Long would simply be lying. Huey Long notably used his powers as a Governor, or as a Senator to the bettering of the people. For one instant Long forced many laws through when he first became the Governor of Louisiana. But, those laws weren't something that would give him more power but rather gave schools across the state new and modern books and expanded the state's university. He also passed bills that would remove poll taxes for African Americans during a turbulent time in America's racial history. Even though Long used his power for the betterment of the Louisiana people, modern politicians that claim to be strong-arm populists like Long don't hold many of his values and are but shadows of the former Governor. Many of these modern and “new-era” politicians only try to change things that would better one side of the aisle or even just themselves. Instead of working with each other, they instead bicker and fight about petty laws that only affect large corporations within the state and leave the common man in the dust. The Stair Party can kindle that flame of compassion within politics to create a movement of bipartisanship within the Louisianan population in order to face the heaps of local corruption that plague the state. We must give people the ability to choose who they believe can really help them through democracy reform in which third parties can thrive and truly represent the citizens. Let's end the duopoly in local politics and let's end the left-right nonsense that's infected this nation for decades.


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