Vitter Dominates Final Debate
Edwards on Defense Over Syrian Refugees
The final gubernatorial debate between U.S Senator David Vitter (R) and State Representative John Bel Edwards (D-Amite) marked a significant shift in momentum as Edwards was forced to defend comments he made regarding Syrian refugees.
From the outset, Mr. Edwards was on the defensive and stayed there.
Mr. Vitter attacked Mr. Edwards' recent statement that Edwards would be "partners" with federal authorities to "accommodate refugees" entering the United States. When pressed, Mr. Edwards said his comments had been misinterpreted.
Mr. Edwards would not say how he would resist refugee placement in Louisiana as governor.
Reports are that refugees have been entering the Port of New Orleans since President Obama authorized the policy. At least 26 governors, including Louisiana governor Bobby Jindal, have informed the State Department their states will not be accepting mass refugee migration.
As governor, Mr. Vitter has pledged to use whatever means necessary to resist the Obama policy of allowing refugees to freely cross state borders.
Last Friday's terror attack in Paris, now connected to ISIS, killed at least 150 people. It is now believed at least one of the attackers is a Syrian refugee.
In the debate, Mr. Edwards also had to defend a controversial 29% Lifetime rating from Louisiana Association of Business and Industry (LABI). Mr. Vitter has achieved a 95% Lifetime rating.
After the debate, LABI issued a strongly-worded statement condemning Edwards' lack of truthfulness in representing his business record.
LABI's statement read, in part, "Rep. Edwards’ rhetoric on tax increases did not match his career voting record,” said Brian Landry, vice president of LABI Political Action. “He claimed he did not support tax increases last session, despite the fact he clearly helped raise them by at least $700 million. He also claimed he supports spending cuts and efficiencies, despite the fact he has vocally opposed them in the Legislature.”
LABI added, "The voting records show that Sen. Vitter supports policies that rein in government spending, protect taxpayers, and create a strong and vibrant private sector economy. On the other hand, Rep. Edwards’ voting record clearly shows he favors bigger government, higher taxes and new mandates on employers.”