At the April 28 council meeting you leave multi-millionaire, tax-hating, tea party mouthpiece Ross Little utterly speechless. Who leaves Ross Little speechless? You do, Kenneth Boudreaux. You do.
After Little asks rhetorically during discussion of that Louisiana Avenue/I-10 TIF extension in your district on the north side of Lafayette why such taxing arrangements only seem to be available to some developers, you ask him, “Would you like one?”
You have little Little stammering at that point, flat-footed and in the palm of your hand. It was awesome.
“If someone would like one, they come forward, it’s assessed, evaluated, it’s tested,” you explain. “Some get it, some don’t, but the first step is to ask.”
That long pause when the AOC camera pans to Little, who looks like a deer in the headlights? Oh man!
“So in response to your question why don’t we do it for all?” you say, letting the line dangle like the dagger you’re about to plunge into Little’s parsimonious heart.
“Yes,” Little replies.
“It’s because some people just don’t ask,” you conclude.
That long, pregnant pause that follows is even more satisfying than the first.
“Thank you very much,” Little replies and shrinks back to the gallery like a schoolboy who just got his fingers paddled by a ruler-wielding nun.
We didn’t think we could appreciate you any more than that, Kenneth Boudreaux. And then you drop the video of file footage from past council meetings starring all the usual gadflies from the south-side tea party caucus — Joyce Linde, councilmen William Theriot and Jared Bellard, Jeremiah Supple, Carol Ross (who wants to join you on the council next year) — saying in one way or another favorable things about the Target-anchored development and how TIFs are intended for blighted or under-served areas.
“I’ve prepared a little video to show you the hypocrisy that exists in this room and in this community,” you say as the video is queued up. And, man, does it deliver.
You have fellow Councilman Bellard so bellicose, his bad haircut looks badder. He wasn’t going to vote for the TIF anyway, so whatever.
But the way you shut down Linde, the Tea Party of Lafayette board member who only likes a tax when it’s taxidermy, was a thing of such pure, unadulterated beauty, it took our breath away.
Did you know Linde was going to attend the meeting on the 28th and sign a card indicating her opposition to the TIF extension when you put the video together?
Did you know she would violate council rules by submitting a blue card in an effort to speak after discussion had already begun, affording you the chance as council chairman to bang your gavel and order security to “remove her from the room”?
You probably hoped so. It was just so awesome, but we gush too much methinks.
And the cream in your sweet cup of victory tea: The council approves the TIF extension by a 6-3 vote.
Take a victory lap, Kenneth Boudreaux. You’ve earned it.