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This publication is available in microform from University Microfilms International. IMP” …1101101.11111111111. Call toll-free 800-521-3044.1n Michigan, Alaska and Hawaii call collect 313-761-4700. Or mail inquiry to: University Microfilms International. 300 North Zeeb Road. Ann Arbor. MI 48106. OPEN MONDAYSATI’lIDAV 106 AND OPEN SVNDAY 104 WATSON & COMPANY BOOKS 472.4190 head with charges of election fraud, and Treen resurfaced to become the first Republican governor since Reconstruction. Economically or organizationally, times weren’t so propitious for Treen. Edwards was already gearing up for a 1983 rematch as Treen tried to appease power brokers in the state government. In the 1983 election, journalist Maginnis folloWs the candidates from strawberry festivals to $1,000 dinners. Treen’s staff decides to make honesty “the issue.” The political minefield of the past few years gives the candidates plenty to draw upon. Edwards uses his wit and skill at obfuscation to amuse the populace while racking up contributions. In Treen’s home, Jefferson Parish, he deprecates the incumbent: “He’s been governor three and a half years and he hasn’t made a decision yet. What can you do with a guy who takes an hour and a half to watch 60 Minutes?” Hoping to add law-and-order to the anti-corruption campaign, Treen seizes upon Edwards’ pardon record as governor. Charges and counter-charges, many offensive and erroneous, reel forth from each camp. Ironically, as the controversy brews, Edwards’ younger brother, Nolan, is killed by a former client he helped release. The pardon issue fizzles as the public sympathizes with Edwards. Meanwhile, some of the most difficult issues facing the state are ignored in the campaign. Of the ten worst counties in the country for per capita cancer deaths, Louisiana has five of them along the industrial belt of the Mississippi. Simultaneously, the fragile coastal wetlands are being eroded at an alarming channel dredging and pipeline work by the oil and gas industry. Neither candidate chooses to make the environment an issue. Edwards exhibits little sensitivity for the air, soil and water unless he can sell it. Treen’s record is little better, and he hasn’t the acumen to champion the ecology either. Edwards ridiculed his opponent: “What can you do with a guy who takes an hour and a half to watch 60 Minutes ?” Maginnis writes forcefully of the advisers and the hangers-on, from district attorneys to insurance salesmen, that form Louisiana’s political landscape. He travels the state following their religious posturing and campaign promises. He avoids such controversial topics as nuclear power and poverty. But that seems more his subjects’ fault than his own. Although Edwards was the favorite throughout the campaign, Maginnis produces some suspense as he details the fervor and frustration of both parties as they near the election. He also minces no words on pollsters: They have struck a rich new vein of clients with more money, more influence and more capacity to screw up the whole system than any platoon of politicians could muster. The horror of 1983 is that the media have swallowed the polls. Armed with this newest toy, the media independent of the candidates’ money and manipulations have become a dominant and destructive force in this election as well as a grave future threat to the American political system. This dissatisfaction is echoed when exit polls on election day predict Edwards’ landslide at three in the afternoon. In one of the most expensive and elaborately run state elections in American history, he wins by a margin of 26 percent of the votes, carrying all but two parishes. With characteristic flamboyance, Marion orchestrates a fundraising trip to France to pay off $4 million of the campaign debt. Edwards’ current snafu with the grand jury concerns a $2 million fee he received for legal services in a hospital construction contract. He amended his original statement to admit partnership in the venture before taking office in March, 1984. His close friend and former health undersecretary Ronald Falgout received confirmation of five hospital proposals through Edwards’ order on July 30, 1984. The same day he ordered a 90-day moratorium, effective August 1, on any further proposals. Edwards claims the moratorium request came from the state’s Department of Health and Human Resources. In his dry style, Maginnis offers some light-hearted wisdom of his own on money and politics in Louisiana: “Sooner or later in this state, you figure a governor has to die or go to jail.” Cl Regarding Babe Schwartz It doesn’t matter what it says: if Schwartz said it . . . I believe it! \(Furthermore, I’m not entirely Michael Wyatt Austin Get That Melting Pot Out of the Kitchen Bill Helmer may be heartened by the development of the taco quiche, but to me it sounds a lot more as if the invading forces of darkness are taking over than that Texas is turning their culinary ways to good purpose. When I saw guacamole on a bagel on an Austin menu, I was depressed rather than uplifted. Though a taco quiche would probably at least taste good, who knows where this will all end? Salmon chili, pecan-and-Kiwifruit pie? Is a melting pot really suitable for cooking? Laura Burns Austin Damn Yankee In reference to Dave Denison’s article February 8, 1985, issue commenting in a derogatory manner about our history, plaques, and statues on the grounds of the Capitol, there is only one thing to say, or maybe two. If you don’t like it, lump it. I’m sure even Mr. Denison’s heard that expression before, or the overused expression but still so true: Yankee, Go Home! Becky Boyd Houston DIALOGUE 18 MARCH 8, 1985