BATON ROUGE — Louisiana Attorney General Jeff Landry stood outside the state capitol building today to condemn the state of emergency issued by Governor John Bel Edwards.
“People have got to be able to get back to work,” Landry shouted at reporters through the howling winds of the incoming Hurricane Ida, which is projected to make landfall as a category 4 hurricane. At one point, his notes were blown out of his hands and sent flying across the steps of the capitol.
“I mean, what does the governor expect us to do? Just hunker down and hide inside our homes because of a breeze? The people of Louisiana have a right to go outside, no matter what the conditions,” the attorney general said.
Landry has been a vocal critic of the governor’s, especially in regards to COVID restrictions. Last year, Landry filed a petition to terminate the state’s public health emergency declaration. Doing so would have made Louisiana, one of the nation’s most impacted regions, the only state in the country without a public health emergency declaration and potentially end federal aid intended to help the state recover from the effects of the virus.
In an email earlier this month, Landry gave his employees and supporters tips and strategies on how to avoid complying with the statewide mask mandates in schools, citing religious freedoms for opposing wearing a piece of fabric that medical studies have proven to be effective at slowing the spread of the coronavirus.
“Louisiana law offers broad and robust protections for students’ and parents’ religious and philosophical objections to certain state public health policies,” Landry wrote. “I support your religious liberties and right to conscientiously object.”
Children under the age of 12 are currently unable to receive vaccines, and the delta variant of the virus has infected thousands of schoolchildren across the state. Just last week, Louisiana reported it’s youngest COVID-19 victim when state health officials announced that a child under the age of 1 was killed by the virus.
But Attorney General Landry is committed to his ideology, he says. No matter who or how many people it kills.
“Look, 99.9% of Louisiana residents won’t die from this storm. It’s just a common summer shower. You watch. In a few days, it’ll clear up like a miracle.” Landry said of Hurricane Ida. “Closing businesses and locking people inside their homes will only make things worse. It’s time to open back up.”