Capitol Buzz for Dec. 22, 2013

The Louisiana Democratic Party splashed out for a Grinch costume to bestow the “naughtiest” award on Republican Gov. Bobby Jindal last week. The Grinch and party staffers made the trek to the State Capitol and the Governor’s Mansion with a certificate notifying Jindal of his “dastardly deeds and unkind behavior.”

The party — with the help of input from a social media campaign — determined that the governor deserves coal this Christmas for nonstop campaigning and too much time out of state.

Jindal’s heart did not seem to shrivel from the criticism. Instead, it may have grown three sizes that day.

“I hope everyone in the headquarters of the Louisiana Democratic Party has a great Christmas during which they remember the reason for the season. From my family to theirs, I wish them peace and rest and renewal,” the governor said in a statement.

Governor’s sons getting duck calls

After weighing in to the Duck Dynasty controversy this week, Gov. Bobby Jindal let it slip that his kids are getting Duck Dynasty calls for Christmas.

Standing in front of newspaper reporters and cameras from the three major television networks at a press conference in Walker on Thursday Jindal said, although he doesn’t watch the show regularly, his sons Shaan and Slade are big fans.

“My own boys are huge fans, and I don’t want to spoil their Christmas surprise, they’re getting Duck Dynasty duck calls for Christmas. That’s something they asked for, and so, that is under the Christmas tree waiting for them to open,” Jindal said.

Donelon not seeking to lead national board

State Insurance Commissioner Jim Donelon caused a bit of flurry last week when he announced that he would not seek reelection as head of the National Association of Insurance Commissioners. The NAIC is an association of state-level insurance regulators.

As head of the NAIC, Donelon recently met with President Barack Obama in the White House to discuss concerns about the Affordable Care Act.

The group was holding its annual meeting in Washington, D.C., when Donelon, who is battling prostate cancer, said he would not run for reelection. Though NAIC presidents are allowed to seek second terms, by tradition they do not.

Donelon said he was just following the script. But after several expressions of sympathy, the 69-year-old Metairie resident felt the need clarify that he was stepping down only because it was expected of him. He then said he would seek reelection as Louisiana Insurance commissioner in two years.

Donelon’s long battle with cancer has been known around the corridors of the State Capitol since he had surgery 18 months ago. But Donelon remained on the job through his radiation treatments.

Moret names daughter born in November

State Economic Development Secretary Stephen Moret and his wife, Heather, have settled on a name for their new daughter.

Mary Katherine — or MK — arrived Nov. 26 in Baton Rouge. She weighed eight pounds, 12 ounces. The new baby joins big brothers Jackson, 9; Samuel, 7; and Benjamin, 5.

“Mary Katherine and Heather are both doing really well,” Moret said.

BESE members crossed paths at middle school

Chas Roemer, who lives in Baton Rouge, is about to start his second year as president of the state Board of Elementary and Secondary Education.

Jane Smith, a former state lawmaker, is the newest member of the panel and one of Gov. Bobby Jindal’s three appointees.

What unites them?

Smith was a teacher at Greenacres Middle School in Bossier City when Roemer was a student there.

Roemer said Smith never taught him. His sister Caroline Roemer Shirley was in one of her classes.

Smith is a former state lawmaker, teacher, principal and superintendent.

‘Daddy church’ rules in governor’s mansion

Gov. Bobby Jindal gave reporters a glimpse into the discipline handed out in the Governor’s Mansion. Jindal said during a press conference last week that he often lectures his children at bedtime teaching them life lessons in what his kids have started calling “daddy church.”

Later, when he was talking about the need for parents to keep track of what their children are watching on television or doing online, the governor revealed that he and his wife Supriya don’t allow their three children to text message.

“We don’t let our kids text, so they’ve gone and found online games where you can text in the game, so you’ve got to be a step ahead of them,” Jindal said.

Ethics board says no to lobby spinoff plan

The Louisiana Board of Ethics said no to a New Orleans law firm’s plan to avoid a potential conflict of interest violation of the ethics code.

Liskow & Lewis PLC wanted to spin off a separate company to provide clients advice regarding legislation to avoid a conflict because one of its partners — Neil Abramson — is a member of the Legislature.

Abramson, a New Orleans Democrat, would have no financial interest in the new entity or benefit from it. But board members had problems with the arrangement under which the law firm would share offices, handle accounting, billing and cover expenses of the separate company.

“You can call it whatever you want to call it. It’s still Liskow & Lewis doing the lobbying work,” said Ethics Board chairman Blake Monrose.

“It just seems too slick,” said board vice chairman Julie Blewer.

BR Press Club joins Facebook, to meet Jan. 8

The Baton Rouge Press Club is now on Facebook. Watch for weekly notifications of meetings and other news. Please “Like” if you’re on Facebook, and spread the word to your “Friends.”

There will be no meeting of the Press Club of Baton Rouge on Dec. 23 or 30.

The Press Club will start the new year Jan. 6 with Adam Knapp, president and CEO of the Baton Rouge Area Chamber, as the guest speaker.

On Wednesday, Jan. 8, the Press Club will have a special meeting with Gov. Bobby Jindal as speaker.

Compiled by The Advocate Capitol news bureau. Contact email is cnb@theadvocate.com.