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Judge OKs anti-Jindal billboard

A federal judge sided with over the activist group’s critical billboard slamming Gov. Bobby Jindal for not expanding Medicaid under Obamacare.
Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal speaks at CPAC in National Harbor, Maryland, Mar. 6, 2014.
Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal speaks at CPAC in National Harbor, Maryland, Mar. 6, 2014.

A federal judge has ruled in favor of concerning the liberal activist group’s critical billboard against Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal over not expanding Medicaid under Obamacare, according to the Times Picayune.

Louisiana’s tourism office sued the group after it put up a billboard just outside Baton Rouge that said “LOU!SIANA. Pick your passion!” in the style of the state’s tourism campaign. “But hope you don’t love your health. Gov. Jindal’s denying Medicaid to 242,000 people,” the sign read.

Jindal declined federal money to expand Medicaid as part of the Affordable Care Act, arguing that the health care law was so bad that he wouldn’t inflict it on the state. The Medicaid expansion would give more than 200,000 low-income Louisianans health care coverage. 

The judge ruled on Monday that the group’s poster -- despite mimicking a tourism campaign that the state has spent more than $69 million on -- didn’t do “irreparable injury” to Louisiana’s tourism campaign.

"The State has failed to demonstrate a compelling reason to curtail's political speech in favor of protecting of the State's service mark," U.S. District Court Judge Shelly Dick said in her ruling, according to the Times Picayune.

 Lt. Gov. Jay Dardenne, a likely gubernatorial candidate next year, filed the lawsuit last month, complaining that the billboard tarnished the campaign.

But the judge said that Dardenne “underestimates the intelligence and reasonableness of people viewing the billboard.”