A Southern Media poll taken in early November shows that 50 percent of voters think the coastal damages lawsuit by the Southeast Louisiana Flood Protection Authority-East against 97 oil and gas companies should continue. That's compared to 36 percent who want it dropped and 14 percent who don't know or won't say.
Photo by Robin May
This aerial photograph shows canals oil and gas companies cut through Louisiana's wetlands. The SLFPA-E's suit claims the companies ravaged the state's coastal landscape, which is the first line of defense for South Louisiana's communities against the destructive forces of hurricanes.
Support for continuing the suit is strongest among black voters, with 70 percent in favor of pushing forward and 18 percent wanting it dropped. White voters are evenly split, at 42 percent for continuing the suit and 44 percent for backing off.
SMOR pollster Bernie Pinsonat acknowledged that a group supporting the lawsuit recently commissioned its own poll that revealed more favorable responses.
He said white voters in Louisiana traditionally dislike issues that benefit trial lawyers, which he is how the SMOR poll couched the question.
"Business owners are fearful of the guy next door being sued," he added. "It might be his neighbor, but tomorrow it’ll be him."
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