After first objecting to Louisiana Gov. Jon Edwards dropping the state’s lawsuit against President Barack Obama that claimed the Common Core State Standards was federal overreach, Attorney General Jeff Landry abruptly reversed course Thursday and agreed to drop it.
Late last week, recently-elected Democratic Gov. Jon Edwards said he dropped the lawsuit, filed by then-Gov. Bobby Jindal, a Republican. The recent passage of the Every Student Succeeds Act, which specifically bars the federal government from mandating standards, coupled with the state’s own efforts to rewrite its standards, makes the lawsuit “educationally and financially unnecessary,” according to the Associated Press. The state has paid close to $450,000 to its lawyer, Jimmy Faircloth, to handle the case, the AP reported.
But on Monday, Landry filed papers with the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals to let him take over as plaintiff instead of Jindal.
“Under our Constitution, the person tasked with the authority to make decisions on the legal business of the State of Louisiana is the Attorney General,” Landry wrote in a letter to Gov. Edwards.
Edwards’ lawyer quickly shot back with a motion saying Landry had no authority to intervene in a lawsuit Jindal had filed on behalf of the governor’s office.
It wasn’t long before Landry’s attorney Elizabeth Murrill wrote in a motion, “The attorney general, after independently reviewing this matter, has concluded he no longer opposes dismissing this appeal.”
Jindal brought the suit in late 2014, alleging that Obama manipulated policy waivers and billions of dollars in federal grant money to illegally pressure states to adopt the common core.
A version of this news article first appeared in the State EdWatch blog.