Bernard LeBas

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Harvey Bernard LeBas


Louisiana State Representative for
District 38 (Evangeline and
St. Landry parishes)
In office
2008–2020
Preceded by Eric LaFleur
Succeeded by Rhonda Butler

Born September 21, 1943
Place of birth missing
Political party Democrat
Spouse(s) Charlotte Ann Demoruelle LeBas
Residence Ville Platte, Louisiana, USA
Alma mater Sacred Heart High School (Ville Platte)

University of Louisiana at Monroe

Occupation Pharmacist

Harvey Bernard LeBas, known as Bernard LeBas or H. Bernard LeBas (born September 21, 1943),[1] is a pharmacist from Ville Platte in Evangeline Parish, Louisiana, who is a Democratic former state representative for District 38. From 2008 to 2020, he represented Evangeline and St. Landry parishes in the southern portion of his state.[2]

Background

LeBas graduated in 1961 from then Roman Catholic Sacred Heart High School in Ville Platte. In 1968, he received his pharmacy degree from the University of Louisiana at Monroe, then known as Northeast Louisiana State College.[2][3] LeBas owns four pharmacies in Evangeline and St. Landry parishes. His father, brother, two of his sons, and a daughter-in-law were or are pharmacists. He is a past president of the Louisiana Pharmaceutical Association.[4]

LeBas is a former resident of Lafayette and Youngsville, both in Lafayette Parish..[5]

Political life

As a newcomer to politics, LeBas was unopposed in the nonpartisan blanket primary held on October 20, 2007, for the District 38 House seat vacated by his fellow Democrat, Eric LaFleur, who ran instead successfully for the District 28 seat in the state Senate.[4] To gain a second term in 2011, LeBas defeated two Republican opponents, Julie Kay Disotell Harrington (born November 1970) of Melville in St. Landry Parish and Peter Anthony Vidrine[6](born November 1957), also of Ville Platte. Formerly affiliated with the John Birch Society and the Ron Paul presidential campaign in 2012, Vidrine subsequently joined the [[Constitution Party]. In 1996, Vidrine ran for Louisiana's 7th congressional district seat, since disbanded, but victory went to the Democrat, Christopher "Chris" John of Crowley in Acadia Parish.[7]

In the 2011 campaign, LeBas received more than $68,000 in contributions from the Louisiana Democratic Party, $6,000 from the Louisiana Dental Association, and $2,500 from a political action committee headed by former Governor Kathleen Blanco.[8] LeBas finished the race with 6,023 votes (51.8 percent) to Harrington's 3,787 (28.4 percent) and Vidrine's 2,649 (19.8 percent).[6]

Representative LeBas served on the House Democratic Caucus, the Rural Caucus, and the Acadiana delegation. He sat on three House committees: (1) Agriculture, Forestry, Aquaculture, and Rural Development, (2) Health and Welfare, (3) Transportation, Highways, and Public Works.[2]

LeBas' ratings from the Louisiana Association of Business and Industry have ranged from 31 to 69 percent over the years he has been a legislator. In 2012, the National Federation of Independent Business scored him 40 percent. LeBas ranked 100 percent from the Louisiana Association of Educators.[9] In April 2015, he introduced legislation to double the number of days that a substitute teacher in public schools who has retired from full-time teaching could teach without an adverse impact on their retirement benefits.[10]

In 2013 and 2014, the conservative Louisiana Family Forum scored him 70 and 86 percent, respectively. Louisiana Right to Life in 2013 and 2014 rated him 75 and 100 percent, respectively.[9] In 2008, the Louisiana Right to Life Federation presented him with a "Defender of Life" award for his work on behalf of HB 517 to protect the rights of conscience of health care providers.[11] In 2014, LeBas co-sponsored the requirement that abortion providers have hospital admitting privileges near their clinic; only five House members voted against the measure.[12]

LeBas also voted in 2014 to extend the time for implementation of the Common Core State Standards Initiative. He voted against the requirement that companies must give public notice of proposed hydraulic fracking. He voted to halt the transportation of dogs in open truck beds on interstate highways. He voted against the repeal of the anti-sodomy laws; the measure failed in the House, 27-67. He voted for the concealed carry of weapons in restaurants that serve alcoholic beverages. In 2013, he did not vote on the issue of permanent concealed-carry permits but opposed making information on the permits a matter of the public record. In 2010, he opposed allowing handguns to be brought into churches for protection of the congregation.[12]

He voted for judicial pay increases and for removing the mandatory retirement age of judges. LeBas voted to reduce the penalties for marijuana possession; the measure passed the House, 54-38.[12]

LeBas voted against tax incentives to recruit a National Basketball Association team to Louisiana and opposed state income tax deductions to taxpayers donating to scholarship funds. He did not vote on the issue of requiring that welfare recipients undergo periodic testing for use of narcotics. In 2011, LeBas co-sponsored parole eligibility for elderly offenders. He voted for a permanent tax on cigarettes. He opposed reducing the number of hours that polling stations remain open; Louisiana traditionally has had 14-hour election days. He voted to forbid telephone use while driving. LeBas opposed changes to the teacher tenure law.[12]

Term-limited in the state House in 2019, LeBas was an unsuccessful candidate for the District 28 seat in the Louisiana Senate, won by the Republican Heather Cloud

References

  1. Harvey LeBas (Bernard). Mylife.com. Retrieved on October 6, 2020.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 Membership in the Louisiana House of Representatives, 1812-2024 (Evangeline and St. Landry parishes). Louisiana House of Representatives. Retrieved on October 6, 2020.
  3. H. Bernard LeBas's Biography. Project Vote Smart. Retrieved on October 2, 2020.
  4. 4.0 4.1 Bernard LeBas. louisianagovernmentalstudies.com. Retrieved on May 7, 2015.
  5. Harvey Bernard LeBas. intelius.com. Retrieved on October 6, 2020.
  6. 6.0 6.1 Louisiana Secretary of State, Election Returns, October 22, 2011.
  7. Peter Vidrine. Facebook. Retrieved on May 7, 2015.
  8. Bernard LeBas. ballotpedia.org. Retrieved on October 6, 2020.
  9. 9.0 9.1 H. Bernard LeBas's Ratings and Evaluations. Project Vote Smart. Retrieved on October 6, 2020.
  10. LeBas seeks to ease substitute teacher shortage. The Drum Newspaper (April 9, 2015). Retrieved on May 7, 2015.
  11. Defender of Life Award Recipients. prolifelouisiana.org. Retrieved on May 7, 2015.
  12. 12.0 12.1 12.2 12.3 H. Bernard LeBas's Voting Records. Project Vote Smart. Retrieved on October 6, 2020.