Gov. Mike Foster’s plan to make Louisiana’s insurance commissioner an appointed position rather than an elected one was rejected by the state’s House of Representatives. According to the New Orleans Times-Picayune, House Bill 638 by Rep. Tony Perkins, R-Pride, failed on a 17-77 vote. It would have authorized the governor to appoint the commissioner beginning in 2008.
Perkins has said his intention in moving the office to an appointed one is to lessen the impact of politics on the insurance commissioner. He noted that three previous commissioners have spent time in jail for convictions related to their office.
Those opposing the bill claimed that making the commissioner an appointed office would not take politics out of the picture. They argued that the bill would stifle public input and asserted that an elected official would be more responsive to the public than an appointed one.
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