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Louisiana legislative session ends with a flop -- again


“Ye are a factious crew and enemies to all good government,” Oliver Cromwell told the Rump Parliament in 1653, and Gov. John Bel Edwards must know exactly how he felt.
Cromwell wound up his peroration by telling his “pack of mercenary wretches” to be gone. Unfortunately for Edwards, he doesn't have that option with the state legislature. When a session turns out to be such a flop as this one, the answer is not to send everyone packing, but to do it all again.
So we'll have to pay for yet another special session. As Einstein supposedly observed, doing the same thing over and over in hopes of a different result is insanity, but it is unlikely that any legislators expect any solution to the state's fiscal woes to emerge when they reconvene. They'll probably settle for extending at least part of the sales tax they purportedly imposed as a temporary measure while they pursued fundamental reforms and plugged a $1.3 billion budget deficit.
They set up a brain trust to figure out how to rationalize Louisiana's tax system, but killed just about every bill that sought to implement its recommendations. If they couldn't or wouldn't come up with a fix in the regular session, it is hard to hold out much hope next time, for nothing has changed.




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