Author Leo Honeycutt addresses Lions Club
By: Howell Dennis
CROWLEY - Author Leo Honeycutt, who’s biography on former Louisiana Governor Edwin Edwards was released last year, spoke to the Crowley Lions Club Tuesday about the life and achievements of the legendary Louisiana politician. According to the Lions Club’s Tim Mader, who introduced him, Honeycutt’s book has sold 30,000 copies so far and will soon be on the New York Times’ best-seller list.
Honeycutt said that his book is ‘not only a biography on Edwards, but on Louisiana as well.’
“The only hope of improving our future is to learn about our past,” said Honeycutt. “People who don’t know the past are doomed to repeat it.”
Honeycutt discussed Edwards life in depth, starting with his childhood in Marksville until his current prison sentence for racketeering. He often quoted Edwards directly, borrowing his trademark Cajun wit, which drew laughterfrom those in attendance.
Among the examples:
When Edwards’ was told his naval flying classes were ending because World War II was over, Edwards protested because he believed that the class should continue since they were nearly done. After he was told ‘no’ by his commanding officer Edwards stated ‘that was my first run-in with government waste.’
On his race against David Duke, Edwards’s stated ‘the only way I won’t be elected if I get caught in bed with a dead girl or a live boy.’
When presidential candidate Bill Clinton asked Edwards for advice on handling the press who were asking about a torrid, 12-year affair with Jennifer Flowers, Edwards replied ‘there are no torrid 12-year affairs, 12 hours or weeks maybe, never 12 years.’
Honeycutt also detailed Edwards’ political career, from his days on the Crowley City Council to his race against David Duke.He went into Edwards’ friendships with celebrities such as Elvis Presley, Glen Cambell and Audrey Meadows. He discussed the rice deal with North Korea that brought $40 million to Louisana’s farmers as well as an oil severance tax that turned a $30 million deficit to an $88 million surplus.
While listening to Honeycutt, it becomes evident that he developed an admiration for Edwards.
“Look at the people who have held the office over the last 20 years,” said Honeycutt. “I don’t think we’ll ever have a better administrator.”