NEW ORLEANS (WGNO) — State leaders took the floor, addressing residents about some of the hurdles they’re trying to overcome at the state capital. A main topic of discussion was the redistricting process and how it’s affecting the representation of people of color across the state.
“The minority population in Louisiana has increased, and the minority is one-third of the state. We went into this redistricting session with the hopes of getting a third of the congressional districts, which would of been two out of the six districts that we have, and we still only have one,” said State Rep. Candace N. Newell.
That one minority congressional leader is Congressman Troy Carter. State Rep. Newell says Carter is the voice of all minority residents in the state, but she says there needs to be another minority representative for the north part of the state.
“People up north should not have to call a guy from New Orleans to talk about and help them with their concerns,” said Newell.
Newell says they’re now waiting on the Supreme Court to rule in order for the possibility of getting another minority congressional leader. State leaders also discussed insurance reform and how they’re trying to help with rising rates.
“One of the bills that I was fortunate enough to get passed to work with the commissioner was Act 69, which actually increased the amount of capital and surplus that is required of insurance companies,” said State Senator Joseph Bouie Jr.
Leaders also discussed their fight for women’s reproductive rights and marijuana legalization, but they say they can only do so much with only a fraction of residents hitting the polls.
“I believe that anybody can be in the position to be elected if we do more as a community to get them elected. We’re allowing a very small number of people to decide how the entire state will live,” said State Rep. Delisha Boyd.