Talk Louisiana

Weekdays at 9am

Talk Louisiana connects listeners with Louisiana newsmakers through live interviews and original feature reporting. Hosted by award-winning journalist and broadcast veteran, Jim Engster, Talk Louisiana brings listener insight into the conversation by phone and email. In addition to the weekday morning broadcast, hear Talk Louisiana at wrkf.org and the WRKF App.

Congressman Mike Johnson

U.S. Rep. Mike Johnson of Shreveport joins us for a minute to talk with us briefly about Louisiana's flood recovery efforts, the reaction to Gov. John Bel Edwards' appearance in front of a congressional committee on Wednesday, and his role with Freedom Caucus on Health Care.

Ben Jaffe
wikimedia.org User:Infrogmation CC BY-SA 2.0

Ben Jaffe is the owner and creative director at Preservation Hall, and head bass player with the Preservation Hall Jazz Band. He grew up two blocks from Preservation Hall and his dad was previously the band's manager. Jaffe talks with us about the significance of this New Orleans institution.

Len Apcar

Len Apcar, Chair of Media Literacy at LSU Manship School of Mass Communication, on the label "fake news" and its impact on the 2016 election.

Apcar says some politicians may appropriate the term "fake news" as a label to criticize stories they don't like or media outlets they don't agree with. He maintains the original concept of "fake news" refers to completely fabricated fictional stories masquerading as news stories on what he calls phony websites that get picked up and spread by social media.

Texas A&M

Texas A&M historian Elizabeth Cobbs talks about her contention that American women consistently lag behind other countries in victories for equal rights. Cobbs is in New Orleans, and her discussion coincides with Gov. John Bel Edwards, who declares he will renew his push for equal pay legislation.

State Senator Dan Claitor of Baton Rouge
Sue Lincoln

State Senator Dan Claitor of Baton Rouge is co-authoring a bill proposing to abolish the death penalty in Louisiana. The prohibition on the death penalty would take effect after July 30th.

Twitter @alialmossawi

Ali Almossawi is author of "Bad Choices: How algorithms can help you think smarter and live happier." Almossawi works on the data science team at Mozilla. He's an alumnus of MIT and Carnegie Mellon and has worked at the MIT Media Lab.

Kimberly Willis Holt

National Book Award winning author Kimberly Willis Holt grew up in Louisiana and attended LSU. She talks about her latest book, "Blooming at the Texas Sunrise Motel."


Louisiana State University Faculty Senate President Kevin Cope discusses the impact of budget cuts on the university and on faculty morale. He addresses the effect on students with the reduction in TOPS benefits.

Cope says LSU's faculty has shrunk in the past two years from 1,425 to roughly 1,200 full-time people today.

Restore Louisiana

Julie Baxter Payer, Deputy Chief of Staff for Gov. John Bel Edwards, gets us up to speed on the latest regarding the Restore Louisiana homeowners assistance program. It's been 7 months since the historic flooding of 2016 and people are still getting back on their feet.

Over the weekend, The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development approved the state's action plan for the $1.6 billion in federal flood aid that Congress approved.

Michael Henderson
Sue Lincoln

Michael Henderson, Director of the LSU Public Policy Lab, discusses his research finding Louisiana voters in some cases are receptive to tax increases.

This is information that the governor and lawmakers may weigh as they prepare for the start of a legislative session in which the state budget is front and center.