LSPC Member Riecke vigorously defends against “erroneous allegations” lodged by Retired LSP Trooper Millet regarding improper campaign contributions.

Louisiana State Police Commission Member Jared Caruso-Riecke

At the meeting of the Louisiana State Police Commission (LSPC) of Thursday, January 10, 2019, retired LSP Trooper Leon “Bucky” Millet called for the “immediate resignations” of three LSPC members over what Millet contends are “illegal political activities” entailing campaign contributions.  Here’s a condensed (less than two minutes) video of the allegations and member Jared Caruso-Riecke’s initial response:


Millet lodges his complaint and Riecke provides his initial verbal response at the 1/10/19 LSPC meeting.

Riecke has vigorously denied Millet’s allegations as “erroneous.”  We’ll now break down developments since that January 10, 2019 LSPC meeting:

1.  We made the following public records request of the LSPC on Tuesday, January 15, 2019 at 9:25 p.m.:

2.  The next day, Wednesday, January 16, 2019 at 12:13 p.m., LSPC Executive Director, Jason Hannaman, solicited from Riecke documentation which would be responsive to our request; furthermore, eight minutes later, 1/16/19 @ 12:21 p.m., Riecke indicated, “My response to these erroneous allegations against me will be sent to you digitally via email with hard copy to follow via Federal Express, no later than Friday, January 18, 2019.”  That email exchange follows:

3.  Riecke provided documentation to Hannaman as follows:

A.  A letter response dated one day after his email (i.e. January 17, 2019).  That letter follows:

 

 

 

B.  A letter from Rep. Mark Wright to Riecke begging forgiveness of Riecke dated January 10, 2019, which follows:

 

 

C.  The original campaign finance report page stated to be “incorrect,” which follows:

D.  The “corrected” campaign finance report page, which shows changes to include #1) the contributor (changed from “Riecke and Associates” to “Denis Riecke”), #2) the date (from July 1, 2017 to July 11, 2017), and #3) the address (from 301 North Columbia St. Covington, Louisiana  70483 to 68 Spruce Street, Covington, Louisiana 70433).  That document follows:

 

E.  A copy of the invitation for the event, which follows:

F.  An invoice from the restaurant with a hand-written notation that “Denis Riecke” paid “$500 CASH” to Meribo for refreshments for approximately 30 people who attended the event.  That invoice (which Riecke references as a “receipt” in his letter) follows:

 

G.  A notarized affidavit executed by Denis Riecke on January 11, 2019 indicating that he and he alone was responsible for the cash payment to the restaurant for the fundraiser.  That document follows:

 

In the conclusion of Riecke’s letter, he states:  “I hope my vindication of these charges will be as vigorously and aggressively made public as (the) original allegation.”

We certainly can’t speak for  The Advocate or WWL-TV, both of which followed our original feature on this matter, but certainly we at Sound Off Louisiana have laid Commissioner Riecke’s response out about as bare and public as we know how to do.  We’ll leave it to our readers to assess his response.

We now conclude with a final recommendation to Rep. Wright, particularly in light of him having lambasted us for having, “let this go public with no investigation of the facts.”

Giving every benefit of the doubt about all these “changed particulars,” and given the readily admitted to submission of a campaign finance report containing:  #1) a wrong date, #2) a wrong contributor, and #3) a wrong address of that contributor, we suggest Rep. Wright be a little more diligent on future campaign finance reports.  After all, plenty of folk will be more than happy to scrutinize them upon filing and point out (again, giving every benefit of the doubt) what can only be described as rank sloppiness.  Hence, it just may be a good idea to “tighten the ship a bit” for future filings and not seek a scapegoat (Sound Off Louisiana in this instance) because, being blunt, we have absolutely no intention of being anyone’s scapegoat!

 

If you would like to be added to our Sound Off Louisiana email list to be notified of future posts, simply go to our home page and scroll to the bottom (mobile devices) or to the top of the right-hand column (desktops).  Supply your email address within the subscribe box.  You’ll then receive an automated email from Word Press, and all you have to do is click on the blue “confirm follow” bar contained within that email, and you’ll begin receiving great posts such as the preceding one above.

At request of challengers to incumbent Louisiana Legislators, No Penny Renewal website overhauled to focus SOLELY on Legislators who voted against Gov. Edwards’ repeated sales tax increase measures.

Louisiana State Rep. Alan Seabaugh (R-Shreveport), who recently announced he has removed his name from consideration for a Federal judgeship and will instead run for re-election as well as seek to become the next Speaker of the House of Representatives in Louisiana.

On June 26, 2018, Sound Off Louisiana published its Louisiana Legislative “Wall of Excellence” to express appreciation for 21 Legislators (20 Republicans and one Democrat) who steadfastly voted “no” on Governor John Bel Edwards’ repeated calls for a sales tax renewal during multiple Special Sessions of the 2018 Louisiana Legislature.

Recently, we’ve been contacted by several candidates intending to challenge incumbents who voted in favor of those tax increases.  Those challengers have asked if we would update our “No Penny Renewal” website in order to assist them in their challenge efforts.  Since that has always been the intent of that website, we were only too happy to do so!

For those subscribers who recall the format of the previous No Penny Renewal website, we have completely overhauled it to make it a mirror image of the Wall of Excellence referenced above.  Hence, if voters know that an incumbent is seeking re-election, and that incumbent is NOT pictured on the wall, then that incumbent voted “yes” on the sales tax measures on one or more occasions (or didn’t vote at all on one or more occasions).  

By placing the focus on those who stood firm in opposing Edwards’ sales tax increase measures, we believe we get the dual benefit of assisting challengers AND helping to ensure incumbents who seek re-election who stood firm and opposed the tax increase measures ARE re-elected!

So, with that, here is a replication of the “new and improved” No Penny Renewal website:

NoPennyRenewal theme song.  (Note:  Photo courtesy of 
The Hayride
).

Then-candidate John Bel Edwards (D-Amite) flatly says “no” in response to a question of whether he would raise taxes on individuals or businesses if elected Governor of Louisiana.  Edwards made that promise to voters on 11/16/15, mere days before the runoff election between himself and then-U. S. Sen. David Vitter (R-Metairie).

Despite the above emphatic pledge to the voters of Louisiana, no sooner had Gov. Edwards been sworn into office in January of 2016 than did he IMMEDIATELY seek a full one-cent hike in Louisiana’ state sales tax rate.  His action resulted in Louisiana having one of the highest sales taxes in the nation.  The Louisiana Legislature would only go along with the hike for 27 months, so the tax was all set to expire on June 30, 2018.  Instead, ONLY THE FOLLOWING LEGISLATORS CONSISTENTLY VOTED “NO” EVERY SINGLE TIME ENTAILING RENEWING ANY PORTION OF THE SALES TAX:

 

Rep. Beryl Amedee, R-Houma, District 51, Phone:  (985) 858-2967    amedeeb@legis.la.gov
Final Term:  2024.

 

Rep. Raymond Crews, R-Bossier City, District 8, Phone:  (318) 716-7532  crewsr@legis.la.gov
Final Term:  2024.

 

Rep. Rick Edmonds, R-Baton Rouge, District 66, Phone:  (225) 295-9240  edmondsr@legis.la.gov 
Final Term:  2024.

 

Rep. Julie Emerson, R-Carencro, District 39, Phone:  (337) 886-4687    emersonj@legis.la.gov
Final Term:  2024.

 

Rep. Reid Falconer, R-Mandeville, District 89, Phone:  (985) 792-5185    falconerr@legis.la.gov
Final Term:  2024.

 

Rep. Raymond Garofalo, Jr., R-Chalmette, District 103, Phone:  (504) 277-4729    garofalor@legis.la.gov
Final Term:  2020.

 


Rep. Cameron Henry, R-Metairie, District 82, Phone:  (504) 838-5433    henryc@legis.la.gov
Final Term:  2016; however, Rep. Henry is expected to run for Senate District 9 (previously held by Sen. Conrad Appel, who is term limited).

 

Sen. Sharon Hewitt, R-Slidell, District 1, Phone:  (985) 646-6490    hewitts@legis.la.gov
Final Term:  2024.

CLICK HERE for a great feature article in The Hayride on Sen. Hewitt’s Senate Floor speech on “the burden on the everyday taxpayer,” which is complete with a video of her speech.

 

 

Rep. Valarie Hodges, R-Denham Springs, District 64, Phone:  (225) 791-2199  hodgesv@legis.la.gov
Final Term:  2020.

 

Rep. Dotie Horton, R-Haughton, District 9, Phone:  (318) 949-2463  hortond@legis.la.gov
Final Term:  2024.

 

Rep. Barry Ivey, R-Central, District 65, Phone:  (225) 261-5739  iveyb@legis.la.gov
Final Term:  2020.

CLICK HERE for the feature referencing Rep. Ivey’s assistance on recognizing the problematic nature of the Louisiana Auctioneer Licensing Board.

 

Rep. Sherman Mack, R-Albany, District 95, Phone:  (985) 567-3677    macks@legis.la.gov
Final Term:  2020.

 

 

Rep. Blake Miguez, R-Erath, District 49, Phone:  (337) 937-8827    miguezb@legis.la.gov
Final Term:  2024.

 

 

Sen. John Milkovich, D-Shreveport, District 38, Phone:  (318) 676-7877    milkovichj@legis.la.gov
Final Term:  2024.

CLICK HERE for the feature referencing Sen. Milkovich’s assistance on recognizing the problematic nature of the Louisiana Auctioneer Licensing Board.

 

 

 

Sen. Beth Mizell, R-Franklinton, District 12, Phone:  (985) 839-7714   mizellb@legis.la.gov
Final Term:  2024.

 

 

Rep. Jay Morris, R-Monroe, District 14, Phone:  (318) 362-4270  morrisjc@legis.la.gov
Final Term:  2020.

 

Sen. Jonathan Perry (converts to Sen. Hensgens – see below), R-Kaplan (now R-Abbeville), District 26, Phone:  (337) 893-5035  sen26@legis.la.gov
Final Term:  2032.

 

Note:  Sen. Perry won an election to the Third Circuit Court of Appeals, and his seat was won in a special election by Bob Hensgens (R-Abbeville); it should be noted to any challenger of Hensgens (pictured above) that, in sharp contrast to Perry, Hensgens cast “YES” votes on the sales tax measures on 5/25/18 (0.33 cent), 5/28/18 (0.33 cent), and 6/22/18 (0.45 cent, which ultimately became law).

 

Sen. Neil Riser, R-Columbia, District 32, Phone:  (318) 649-0977   risern@legis.la.gov
Final Term:  2016; however, Sen. Riser intends to seek election to the House of Representatives.

 

Rep. Alan Seabaugh, R-Shreveport, District 5, Phone:  (318) 676-7990  seabaugha@legis.la.gov
Final Term:  2020.

CLICK HERE for Rep. Seabaugh’s “fire and brimstone sermonette” entailing the 2017 attempted gas tax increase (second feature).

 

Rep. Kirk Talbot, R-River Ridge, District 78, Phone:  (504) 736-7299    talbotk@legis.la.gov
Final Term:  2016; however, Rep. Talbot is expected to run for Senate District 10 (previously held by Sen. Dan Martiny, who is term limited).

 

 

Rep. Mark Wright, R-Covington, District 77, Phone:  (985) 893-6262     wrightm@legis.la.gov
Final Term: 2024.

 

So, here’s the bottom line:

 

When you go to the polls on October 12, 2019 and you see an incumbent running who is NOT pictured (Exception:  Bob Hengsens as explained above, who voted FOR Edwards’ sales tax renewal on multiple occasions), you KNOW that he or she voted on one or more occasions to raise your sales taxes (or didn’t vote on one or more occasions)!!

 

In so doing, those incumbents seeking re-election have assisted Gov. Edwards in breaking his campaign promise to the voters of Louisiana not to raise your taxes.  Therefore, from our vantage point, incumbents who are NOT pictured above are no more worthy of being re-elected than he is!!

 

Any incumbent who is NOT pictured is hell-bent on continuing Louisiana’s status quo of funding massive governmental bloat and has demonstrated ZERO will to rein in such bloat and therefore should be kicked right out of office, and we hope this website helps voters in re-electing ONLY THOSE LEGISLATURES WHO ARE PICTURED ABOVE (with the notable exception of Hensgens, whom we sincerely hope draws a challenger who defeats him)!!

 

If you would like to be added to our Sound Off Louisiana email list to be notified of future posts, simply go to our home page and scroll to the bottom (mobile devices) or to the top of the right-hand column (desktops).  Supply your email address within the subscribe box.  You’ll then receive an automated email from Word Press, and all you have to do is click on the blue “confirm follow” bar contained within that email, and you’ll begin receiving great posts such as the preceding one above.

Moon Griffon and Robert Burns engage on Griffon’s radio program entailing Gov. Edwards’ hypocrisy; Griffon lambasts The Advocate’s Tyler Bridges hit piece on Congressman Abraham.

Radio talk show host Moon Griffon

On Thursday, January 17, 2019, Advocate writer Tyler Bridges published a flat-out hit piece on U. S. Congressman Ralph Abraham criticizing him for donating no more than his first two years’ salary (totaling approximately $350,000) to two charities (St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital and Independence Fund, a charity based in Charlotte, North Carolina which focuses on catastrophically-injured or wounded veterans).

Sound Off Louisiana founder Robert Burns made the following comment in the Advocate’s comments section regarding Bridges’ hit piece:

————————————-

Robert Burns

Well, I see the most infamous “stenographer for John Bel Edwards” a/k/a Tyler Bridges is back four years later again masquerading as an objective campaign reporter.

How about you question the Edwards camp about a few of the episodes featured on this website, Tyler?:

www.TheChoiceIsClearLA.com

After all, most of those episodes are derived from Advocate headlines.

———————————–

The next day, The Hayride’s Scott McKay took Bridges to task on the piece with this superb article on Bridges’ journalistic shortcomings.

The next day, Saturday, January 19, 2019, Moon Griffon directly attacked Bridges and the “collusion” of the Baton Rouge media (most especially The Advocate and Tyler Bridges) for the hit piece when he served as host on WJBO’s 2-4 segment.  Let’s listen in on just what Moon had to say:


Moon lambasts Bridges and The Advocate over Bridges’ article.

Soon thereafter, Sound Off Louisiana’s Robert Burns called in and had an exchange with Moon entailing the overall hypocrisy of Gov. Edwards as readily depicted on a site Burns published and is referenced in the Advocate’s comments section above:  The Choice Is Clear LA.  It’s a site that contrasts Gov. Edwards and Congressman Abraham in stark detail.  Moon permitted Burns to readily tout the site, and Moon even chose an audio clip from the site entailing Edwards’ point-blank statement that he “would not raise taxes on individuals or businesses.”  It’s the final clip on the website (always save the best for last)!  Here’s a clip of the exchange between Griffon and Burns:

Griffon and Burns have a little exchange on Gov. Edwards’ hypocrisy.

As is stated at the bottom of The Choice is Clear LA (and which was also featured as a Sound Off Louisiana blog entry), anyone relying solely upon the mainstream media representations for news on the Governor’s race is going to observe very little in the way of objective journalism and much more of partisan hit pieces from journalists such as Bridges who, just as he did four years ago, is masquerading around as an objective journalist.

We all know Bridges made a small fortune in assisting Edwards with the victory in 2015 and then turning right around and co-authoring a book profiting off that Edwards victory (Long Shot).  Perhaps it’s no small bit of irony that those whom Bridges would quote touting the book on the preceding link, Jim Bean and Lanny Keller, are two journalists Griffon point-blank names as being “in collusion” with Bridges!

We wonder if Bridges donated “only” half the proceeds off that book to charity and, if he donated no more than that, if that constitutes a flaw on his part as he deems to be the case for Abraham?

If you would like to be added to our Sound Off Louisiana email list to be notified of future posts, simply go to our home page and scroll to the bottom (mobile devices) or to the top of the right-hand column (desktops).  Supply your email address within the subscribe box.  You’ll then receive an automated email from Word Press, and all you have to do is click on the blue “confirm follow” bar contained within that email, and you’ll begin receiving great posts such as the preceding one above.