Grover Joseph Rees must’ve been ambassador to semi-consciousness the last eight years and missed the entirety of the Bobby Jindal Error in Louisiana. On the back end of a long, distinguished career in Republican politics, the Lafayette resident and former George W. Bush-appointed ambassador to East Timor announced in late February that he is joining a growing field of GOP candidates seeking to replace U.S. Rep. Charles Boustany in Congress. What’s astonishing is that he followed up his announcement by actually boasting in a press release that he has signed Grover Norquist’s infamous Taxpayer Protection Pledge. Remember that?
How can we forget? It’s the pledge that motivated Jindal to twist, contort, smoke up the mirrors and resort to devious budget gimmicks for the better part of his two terms — gutting higher education and public health care along the way — all in service of saying he never raised taxes. New Gov. John Bel Edwards and a formerly Jindal complicit Legislature are wrangling with the tragic consequences today. Rees is quick to point out he’s a Reagan acolyte, and his professed fealty to supply-side economics — that trickle-down sleight of hand that has redistributed wealth from the middle class to the rich for 35 years — has us scratching our heads. Where’s that Rubik’s Cube we gave up on in ’86?