Another difference of opinion involves term-limited Gov. Bobby Jindal's decision to block Medicaid funding to Planned Parenthood, which doesn't provide abortions in Louisiana. All three Republicans say they support Jindal's decision. Edwards said there should be more investigation of claims that the organization was illegally profiting from fetal tissue sales, which Planned Parenthood denies. He also said Louisiana must make sure other health care locations are available to provide services before blocking Planned Parenthood from Medicaid.
Fishermen oppose river diversions because they would alter water conditions and likely make it difficult to harvest shrimp, crabs and oysters where fresh water is flushed into estuaries.
"Simply put, diversions are the backbone" to coastal restoration, Edwards said. But he said projects need to be weighed against socio-economic factors.
The four candidates did not propose large-scale new mechanisms for funding the enterprise, even as candidates predicted the cost of coastal restoration would reach $100 billion. Edwards said he would seek to get the federal government to do more to fix Louisiana's problems. "This is a national priority," he said.
"No great city is going to be great for long if it doesn't have the adequate ability to police itself," said state Rep. John Bel Edwards, the only Democratic candidate running for governor.
Edwards, Public Service Commissioner Scott Angelle and Lt. Gov. Jay Dardenne agreed the extra state troopers in the French Quarter are needed now. But New Orleans should probably provide the additional law enforcement itself eventually. Edwards was the most emphatic about establishing a timeline for state police withdrawal. Dardenne and Angelle were a bit more speculative about when the troopers should be pulled out of New Orleans.
EDWARDS: @JayDardenne says he would delay Medicaid expansion and receipt of $16B of our tax dollars to submit waiver, delaying care.
DARDENNE: @JohnBelforLA has a ton of promises, but not the experience nor the votes to get any of his proposals through. I can get it done.
EDWARDS: Thanks for pointing out that expanding Medicaid requires no vote. So no reason to stall, hurt citizens and waste tax dollars.
DARDENNE: Placing Louisiana on the hook, under the current ACA rules, is foolish and insolvent. Try putting Louisiana before party.
EDWARDS: Waiver removes flexibility in how to spend the tax $ we won't get for the 18 months you delay.
DARDENNE: Untrue. Waiver that #PutLouisianaFirst gives us a chance to address the issue w/o breaking the backs of the taxpayers.
EDWARDS: Continuing to send our federal taxes to other states while we wait for waiver hurts taxpayers. Not the other way around.
The above quotations are from 2015 Louisiana Gubernatorial race: debates and news coverage.
Click here for other excerpts from 2015 Louisiana Gubernatorial race: debates and news coverage.
Click here for other excerpts by John Bel Edwards.
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