The Hatewatch blog is managed by the staff of the Intelligence Project of the Southern Poverty Law Center, an Alabama-based civil rights organization.

The Curious Timing of Louisiana Gov. Jindal’s Absence at Values Voter Summit

By Josh Glasstetter on October 11, 2013 - 12:07 pm, Posted in Anti-LGBT

As recently as Sept. 26, Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal was listed as a confirmed speaker for this afternoon at the Values Voter Summit – the annual religious-right conference hosted by prominent anti-LGBT hate groups like the Family Research Council (FRC) and American Family Association.

But on that day, we criticized Jindal for appointing the FRC’s president, Tony Perkins, to a state law enforcement commission. Not only is the FRC an anti-LGBT hate group, we observed, but Perkins has a checkered history concerning race and ethics and even failed to attend meetings for the other Louisiana commission he sits on – the Commission on Marriage and Family.

We also noted that Jindal was scheduled to speak, as he’s done in the past, at the Values Voter Summit. Later that day, the conference schedule was updated to change Jindal from “confirmed” to “invited.”

Then on Monday, the Southern Poverty Law Center, publisher of Hatewatch, joined with a number of human rights groups to send a letter to Jindal calling on him to not lend the prestige of his office to the conference. Later in the day, Jindal spokesperson Kyle Plotkin told the Times Picayune that Jindal would not be attending due to a scheduling conflict. And yesterday Plotkin told the Baton Rouge Advocate, “We unfortunately are not able to attend the event because of a scheduling conflict, but we wish all the participants the best.”

The timing of Jindal’s scheduling conflict is convenient, to say the least. He switched from confirmed to invited on Sept. 26 after being criticized for the Perkins appointment (as you can see below) and then dropped off altogether after the letter was sent to reporters on October 7.

VVS-Jindal-schedule-2013

Regardless of why he skipped the event, what matters at the end of the day is that Jindal isn’t lending his support to groups that demonize LGBT with falsehoods. In the future, we hope that public officials will not cite scheduling conflicts but rather the bigotry and extremism at the core of the event’s organizers.

  • Sam Molloy

    Dayight Com An’ They Gotta Go Home…

  • Reynardine

    To pass along discourse on Lousy Anna from today’s Politicususa:

    Shiva, Friday, October 11th, 2013 at 11:24 amI really dont know how much influence these creepy cretins have, but I think they are dangerous to society. Tony Perkins is hilarious to listen to, but we know he is there making money on hatred

    Hrafnkell HaraldssonFriday, October 11th, 2013 at 11:52 am And Perkins has confirmed he is running for US Representative in Louisiana’s 6th

    ShivaFriday, October 11th, 2013 at 11:56 am. Oh cripes, someone needs to have fun with that one.

    ReynardineFriday, October 11th, 2013 at 12:05 pmStart thinking up words to the tune of “Jambalaya”.

    ShivaFriday, October 11th, 2013 at 12:06 pmLOL or the Banana boat song. Daaaaaaaaaaaaaayoe

    Hrafnkell HaraldssonFriday, October 11th, 2013 at 12:33 pm Great hilarity will ensue, I am certain

    (Some irregularities from clipboard, I know).

    Any musicians out there?

  • aadila

    INT – GOVERNOR’S OFFICE – RIGHT BEFORE THE CONFERENCE
    (Telephone rings)

    AIDE (answers phone)
    Uh. Oh. Yes, just a moment. (covers phone) Governor? It’s the AFA.

    GOVERNOR
    Tell them I can’t go.

    AIDE (uncovers phone)
    Sorry, the uh GOVERNOR has a uh conflict. He’d love to go, but uh, can’t. Sorry.

    (angry mumbling on line)

    AIDE (cont’d.)
    (covers phone again) Sir? The AFA says you can’t serve both God and Mammon.

    (GOVERNOR thinks it over.)

    GOVERNOR
    Let’s go with Mammon

    AIDE (uncovers phone)
    That’s right, sir. It’s a schedule conflict.

  • aadila

    Gov. Jindal is kind of a maverick in the GOP — this was the guy who quite courageously (in my opinion) criticized the stupidity of so many Republicans and their divisive politics. So, as pointed out in the original post, the key thing is that he opted out of a political mistake. I don’t blame him for citing schedule conflicts — that is what every politician says to avoid embarassing situations.

    But this is the same Gov. Jindal who fired some highly competent, non-political appointees because they pursued a lawsuit against oil companies, a suit he openly disagreed with. It’s pretty obvious that oil runs the show in Louisiana, but the people he fired were industry leaders, engineering professors and so on, who were simply doing their jobs, and I think even the Republicans can recognize a political hatchet job when they see one.

    So my guess is that Gov. Jindal follows the jingle of coin wherever it may lead him. Chances are, he weighed angering the extremist right against angering tourists who can take their money elsewhere, and tourism won out. Thanks to the SPLC for shining a spotlight on it.

    But take heart, Gov. Jindal. At least you are not as embarrasing to the GOP as Senator Cruz.