Gov. John Bel Edwards is engaged in a war of words with a North Louisiana state representative over the state budget.
This past weekend, State Rep. Alan Seabaugh, R-Shreveport, took to Facebook to criticize Edwards for a state budget — passed Sunday by the Legislature — which did not include proper funding for TOPS and the Shreveport medical school.
“The Louisiana House of Representatives just passed Governor Edward’s (sic) budget that cuts TOPS by half and closes the LSU Medical School in Shreveport by underfunding it by $38 million. Both undebatable violations of promises Governor ‘Honor Code’ made during the campaign. Nothing that he says can be trusted or should EVER be believed,” Seabaugh’s post stated.
Edwards, a Democrat, responded to Seabaugh’s post in his own sharply worded editorial submitted to The Shreveport Times where he said Seabaugh’s voting record contributed to the very reason TOPS and LSU Medical were shorted in the state budget.
Edwards called a second special session which started Monday, intended for legislators to find funding for TOPS, the hospitals and other areas of critical need that make up the $600 million shortfall.
Edwards called Seabaugh’s comments a “bitter, partisan attack.”
“When he had the chance to do his part, he sat on the sidelines. He would neither identify cuts to make to stabilize the budget, nor would he support raising additional revenue. He said ‘no’ to every single possible solution without offering any of his own,” Edwards wrote in the Tuesday editorial.
“Rep. Seabaugh needs to look no further than his own voting record when he decides to place blame for the continuation of these problems and the lack of funding for critical programs in this area, like TOPS and the medical school, and I will not let him distract from the work that so many other bold leaders, in both parties, from this region are willing to do,” Edwards continued.