“”Someday Louisiana will get good government. And they ain't gonna like it.
|—Earl K. Long|
Louisiana is a state in the United States that is the sole remnant of what was once a glorious territory extending as far north as (and into) what is now Canada. President Thomas Jefferson bought this chunk of prime real estate from Napoleon when Nappy was desperate to pay off some war debts. Of course the French had originally purchased it in their turn from the Native Americans, paying them handsomely and in no way enacting non-consensual colonial genocide upon them. Ironically, this purchase ran counter to Jefferson's philosophy and visions for what the U.S. would become. But it was too good a deal to pass up.
The Louisiana Territory was explored by Lewis, Clark, and Sacajawea on a presidential commission.
After all the "carving up," the remaining chunk that became the state is between Mississippi and Texas, on the coast of the Gulf of Mexico. While its eastern border with Mississippi runs along the river of the same name, at the southern terminus Louisiana gets both sides, encompassing the large delta formed by this huge river. New Orleans, also known as the "Big Easy," or since April 2010 as the "Big Greasy," in located on this delta, and almost got washed away in 2005 by Hurricane Katrina.
Louisiana is the only U.S. state to have a legal system based on civil law, rather than Anglo-American common law.
Louisiana has a very good scholarship program for people who achieved reasonably well in high school that pays for their undergraduate schooling. The program keeps the youth from reverse-carpetbagging. As the program is under fire, the state may expect another exodus, this time of its college age youth.
 Stelly Plan and current budget crisis
Occasionally, in LA politics, you will hear of the Stelly Plan. This was a very narrowly (51-49) approved tax plan that reduced sales taxes on food and utilities, and increased income taxes to compensate. For reasons still guessed at (Reaganomics), the income tax increase was repealed in 2009 by a semi-protesting Bobby Jindal, followed by five more tax cuts soon after. Needless to say, Louisiana is now deep in debt, fighting for its life by ripping the budget to pieces. Initially restricted to higher-ed and healthcare, every part of the budget faces impending annihilation. Oddly enough, this has set well with a surprising number of Louisiana voters, who say that the cuts need to be more, so as to eliminate the state income tax. This was championed by state GOP chairman Rob Villere in his Tea Party-backed run for Lt. Governor. While he did lose, and taxes aren't part of that job anyway, people still support this position. In January 2012, Jindal proposed eliminating the income tax in favor of higher sales taxes.
Louisiana is legendarily corrupt, but has improved in recent years. Their Senate delegation is David Vitter a Republican and Mary Landrieu, a conservative Democrat. All but 1 of its 7 representatives are Republicans. The other is a conservative Democrat. The Governor is a Republican. The State Legislature is controlled by Republicans. Note that Louisiana Democrats are much more socially conservative than usual, occasionally to the right of Republicans, meaning that each party tries to "out-conservative" the other on "moral" issues. Democrats are generally more liberal on economic issues though, showing they are indeed in the right party.
The state was once solidly Democratic. Even after the Civil Rights Act, Democrats continued to win here. Jimmy Carter carried the state in 1976 as did Bill Clinton in 1992 and 1996. Since 2000, however, Louisiana has mostly been a red state.
 Jungle primary
Louisiana has a rather odd primary system. All the candidates from all the parties compete in the same primary, and the two the receive the most votes go to the election proper, provided nobody gets more than 50% of the votes. This often means that an "election" will consist of two Republicans trying to outdo each other, or two Democrats trying to show that the other is a liberal. Third party and independent candidates are simply screwed.
Being part of the Bible Belt, Louisiana is quite religious. Ninety percent of the population is Christian, with the two largest denominations being Evangelical and Roman Catholic (due to historical French and Spanish influences). Eight percent are atheist or agnostic.
 See also
|The Bible Belt|
| Alabama - Arkansas - Florida - Georgia |
Kansas - Kentucky - Louisiana - Mississippi
Missouri - North Carolina - Oklahoma - South Carolina
Tennessee - Texas - Virginia - West Virginia - Jesusland