A small city in central Louisiana decided it was time for a change at the last election, turning to its former mayor who had held the job for years. What’s unusual? Last fall, the state’s voters overwhelmingly approved a constitutional amendment forbidding felons from seeking elective office for five years after serving their sentences.
Former Mayor Roy Hebron was still under corrections supervision within the past two years after serving time for fraud related to hurricane recovery spending after Hurricane Gustav.
It’s a mess that is going to court, with the defeated incumbent arguing that the amendment was adopted at the same time as the fall election in the town of Ball in Rapides Parish.
We supported the successful amendment, principally because felons seeking office can undermine faith in the political system. But the voters spoke, with 56 percent for Hebron, so it’s an unusual case even for Louisiana.
And hopefully the last such case, as the new constitutional amendment is now in place.
When Louisiana voters enacted new restrictions on felons running for office, they inadvertently ensnared the small town of Ball in a new mayor…