News for Thursday 022014
By Dave Graichen
The rumors have been flying for a while and yesterday he made it official, Former state Rep. Chris Roy Jr. announced his candidacy for Rapides Parish district attorney in the fall elections. The 52 year old Roy became interested in the position after it was announced the current DA, James Downs, was retiring and will not seek re-election. Roy says his work drafting laws that protect children and the elderly give him a unique perspective that he would use as district attorney. The primary election for the DA’s office is Nov. 4. A runoff, if needed, will be Dec. 6.
The gas price has been rising all week. AAA reports the current statewide average for a gallon of regular is $3.20 up a penny from yesterday and a nickel from one week ago.
Former Governor Edwin Edwards tells the Louisiana Radio Network that, while he is not ready to make and official announcement, he has made up his mind about running for Congress in November. The seat left open by Republican Bill Cassidy in the 6th congressional district became open when he announced plans to run for Senate. Edwards, who turns 87 in August says he is still working out the legalities.
State Senator Dan Claitor, a Republican from Baton Rouge, and businessman Republican Paul Dietzel are among those who have already filed candidacy paperwork for the 6th District. UL-Lafayette Political Science professor Pearson Cross says Edwards would most certainly be the strongest candidate in the race if he ended up running.
The DeSoto Parish Sheriff's office says they've arrested three men in the brutal murder and robbery of an elderly man from Gloster. Chief Deputy Horace Womack says 79-year-old Nathaniel Cash was found dead in his ransacked home Tuesday morning. Womack says the suspects allegedly killed the elderly who had aheart attack while being choked and tied up. He says the robbers though Cash had a large amount of money in his house, but they found nothing.
Insurance Commissioner Jim Donelon says 62-thousand Louisiana residents will not be able to keep their current insurance because of the federal healthcare law known as Obamacare. A spokesperson for Blue Cross Blue Shield is the only company doing business in Louisiana that offered transitional relief for those policy holders.
People in Louisiana with HIV or AIDS are facing roadblocks in getting health insurance through the online marketplace created under the federal health law. Most participating insurance companies say they won’t accept payment from a federal program that helps the patients cover their health costs. The decision started with the largest insurer offering coverage to Louisianans through the federal marketplace: Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana. The Louisiana Health Cooperative followed suit. Vantage Health Plan says if those companies continue that policy, it will have to follow their lead. People living with HIV and AIDS accuse the companies of discrimination against costly patients.
The Baton Rouge Police Department says a man is under arrest amid allegations he used Craigslist to trick people into paying thousands of dollars for cars that didn't exist. They say 30-year-old Anthony Sherman was booked Monday during a traffic stop in New Orleans on 5 counts of felony theft.
With the Mardi Gras season getting started, this year's crawfish harvest might not be ready for a few more weeks. LSU Ag Center Researcher Ray McClain says it's still going to take some time because of the unusually cold winter. That means crawfish will be hard to find this weekend. McClain says
there will still be some available to boil but they could be small because they haven't grown much in the cold weather.
The subjects of gay marriage and marijuana legalization in the United States have been major news topics over the past year. So where do Louisianans stand on these issues? Public Policy Polling conducted a survey of 600 likely voters in the Bayou State and spokesman Tom Jenson gay marriage continues to be very unpopular here. Jenson says only 28% of voters in the state think gay marriage should be allowed while 62% of those polled think it should be illegal. However he says 54% of people in the group they interviewed from here said they favor at least civil unions for same sex couples. Jenson says they see a similar divide on the marijuana issue. He says Louisiana supports medical marijuana with 60% in favor and 30% opposition. However Jenson says voters here are not ready for recreational marijuana.