By Robert Mann
It’s pretty clear that that Gov. Bobby Jindal and his staff panicked a few weeks ago when they realized they would close out the 2013-14 state fiscal year with a $141 million deficit.
That, of course, would blow a hole in Jindal’s already dim presidential hopes. After all, you can’t get elected president if you can’t balance your budget back home (never mind the ugly, messy way Jindal has balanced his previous budgets).
So, it appears Jindal and Commissioner of Administration Kristy Nichols went on a furious search throughout the state coffers, looking under every seat cushion to find the funds necessary to cobble together a “balanced” budget.
When they were done, they had magically discovered $319 million.
And then, just to divert attention from their incompetence, they tried to blame the whole thing on state Treasurer John Kennedy, attacking him for not finding the money in the accounts that the Jindal administration controlled. Their attacks and obfuscation have confused the issue just enough that Jindal just might get away with it.
But let the record show that until a few weeks ago, there was apparently widespread panic in Jindal World.
They had failed to balance the state’s budget.