Lamar White Jr.: Treasurer Kennedy is a con artist

We just had to use this illustration again.

State Treasurer John Kennedy is running for U.S. Senate and he will evidently say anything to curry favor with voters rightfully dismayed by the financial crisis facing Louisiana.

Blogger Lamar White Jr. is calling Kennedy’s bluff — and he’s calling him a liar. The headline of a piece White posted Monday — “Treasurer John Kennedy Lies About Jay Dardenne, Mocks Public Art, & Doesn’t Know The Law” — says it all. But White uses another 3,500 words to make his case.

At issue is Kennedy’s recent dissembling social media posts about the many hundreds of thousands of dollars the state — and in particular former Lt. Gov. Jay Dardenne, now Gov. John Bel Edwards’ commissioner of administration — has spent on useless public art. Kennedy cited $1.1 million paid for sculptures installed at the new University Medical (Charity) Center in New Orleans as proof.

Kennedy's argument is essentially that the state is broke so why the hell are we spending all this precious cash on pretty things?

The problem with his complaint, White capably points out, is that the public art is part of a Legislature-approved program known as Percent for Art, an actual law that requires state agencies to earmark 1 percent of the cost of building a facility or renovating one, when the price tag exceeds $2 million, for public art at the facility. In other words, the state was required by law to add art to the University Medical Center because it’s the law.

Kennedy’s misrepresentation of the UMC art, however, did gin up support and a lot of shares on social media by voters who swallowed his canard whole.

White hits the proverbial nail on the head midway through the piece:

If the Academy of Motion Pictures and the Sciences recognized acting performances by a politician, John Kennedy of Louisiana would assuredly receive a nomination. His political beliefs are not based in concrete public policy; they are and have always been designed to promote his own personal ambition. When he ran for Senate against Mary Landrieu in 2008, her campaign launched a simple but effective counterattack: “John Kennedy for Whatever.”

No, Treasurer Kennedy is not an anti-politician; he is the worst possible kind of actual politician: The actor, the chameleon, the self-interested and self-aggrandizing flame thrower who is perpetually seeking a higher office and more power, regardless of what he needs to say or do to achieve his ultimate ambition.

Read it here.