Posted: Tuesday, 17 June 2014 7:50AM
Vitter says he plans to 'lead' if elected governor
During a public speaking event in Baton Rouge, Senator David Vitter, who announced earlier this year that he's running for governor, said that if he succeeds Bobby Jindal as the state's highest elected official, he will not shy away from the various issues impacting Louisiana.
"I will lead," Vitter said. "I'm not running for governor as a stepping stone, or boast a nice title and cut ribbons. I'm not even running to gain cameo appearance on Duck Dynasty."
That last statement could be construed by some as a bit of shot at Governor Jindal, who had a brief appearance in last week's season premiere of Duck Dynasty.
While speaking at the Baton Rouge Press Club, Vitter was asked about TOPS. Jindal has opposed any significant change to the tax-funded scholarship program, but Vitter admitted something must be done to control costs.
"I think the trick is to keep and promote what's been so enormously positive about TOPS and not have runaway costs or spending that we simply can't keep up with over time," he said.
Unlike Jindal, Vitter says he's open to expanding the state's Medicaid program. But the senator says that expansion must result in a better health insurance program for the working poor, without taking money away from other important areas of the budget.
"Because that is the biggest factor that's crushed higher education for the last 30 years," said Vitter.