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“Crossover In Louisiana”: Question Is Not Who Bobby Jindal Endorses, But Whether Either Candidate Would Accept His Support

Looking at the polls (there are now three of them) showing Democrat John Bel Edwards with a double-digit lead over U.S. Sen. David Vitter in the November 21 Louisiana gubernatorial runoff, you’d figure Republicans would be focused on a unity effort to bring Vitter’s defeated GOP rivals into the tent. If so, the effort suffered a blow this morning, when Lt. Gov. Jay Dardenne endorsed Edwards in the runoff. Kevin Litten of the Times-Pic has some background:

Although Dardenne originally indicated he wouldn’t offer an endorsement in the general election, the source said his thinking on the subject evolved over time. Dardenne and Edwards had been talking since election day (Oct. 24), when Dardenne and Republican candidate Scott Angelle were defeated by Edwards and U.S. Sen. David Vitter.

“He went from ‘No I won’t’ to ‘I would if…’ to ‘I might have to,’ to ‘Let’s do this now,'” the source said.

Both Dardenne and Angelle, were the subject of withering political attacks during the primary launched by U.S. Sen. David Vitter’s campaign and the super PACS supporting him. Angelle struck back hard, and Dardenne complained bitterly about the ads during the last two weeks of the campaign during debates before running an ad criticizing Vitter in the last days of the campaign.

Dardenne finished fourth in the primary with 15% of the vote.

Vitter countered with an endorsement from former Gov. Mike Foster, who left office in 2004. You’d normally figure a big target of any Republican unity campaign would be the sitting two-term Republican governor of the state. But according to the Baton Rouge Advocate, Bobby Jindal is “not in a hurry” to endorse a successor:

Both candidates remaining in the governor’s race — Democrat John Bel Edwards and Republican David Vitter — have repeatedly criticized Republican Gov. Bobby Jindal on the campaign trail.

And it appears Jindal isn’t eager to pick which of the two he would prefer succeeds him in the Governor’s Office.

The National Review caught up with Jindal in Boulder, Colorado, on Wednesday and asked whom he prefers.

Jindal has frequently butted heads with both men.

“We haven’t made that decision yet,” Jindal, who is running for president, demurred when asked if he planned to endorse in the race, NRO reports. “That doesn’t mean we won’t. But we haven’t made that decision yet.”

It’s no secret that Jindal and Vitter have an icy relationship. And as chairman of the House Democratic Caucus, Edwards has been one of Jindal’s most vocal opponents at the State Capitol.

The bigger question may not be who Bobby chooses to endorse between campaign events in Iowa, but rather whether either candidate would accept his support.

 

By: Ed Kilgore, Contributing Writer, Political Animal Blog, The Washington Monthly, November 5, 2015

November 7, 2015 Posted by | Bobby Jindal, David Vitter, Louisiana Governors Race | , , , , | Leave a comment

“Will Jindal Make It To Caucus Night?”: In Weaker Financial Position Than Candidates Rick Perry And Scott Walker Were Before They Quit

On January 10, 2016, Bobby Jindal will without question obtain one of his heart’s great desires: liberation from any further obligation to the People of the Gret Stet of Loosiana. As noted here often over the past couple of years, the Gret Stet has become less and less fond of its often-absentee governor, and at the moment he’s doing better in presidential polls in Iowa than he is among the Republicans who know him best.

Three weeks after he becomes a former governor, Iowa will hold its Caucuses. But as third-quarter fundraising numbers drift into view, the question is whether Bobby has enough money to super-size his lunch order, much less organize an effective Caucus performance. Here’s The Hill’s Jonathan Swan:

The presidential campaign of Republican candidate Bobby Jindal looks barely viable, with the Louisiana governor finishing the most recent fundraising quarter with just $261,000 in the bank.

Jindal’s campaign spent more than it raised, taking in $579,000 and spending $832,000 between July 1 and Sept. 30.

And here’s the hammer:

The Louisiana governor is arguably in a weaker financial position than former candidates Rick Perry and Scott Walker were before they quit the race last month.

While Perry had less cash in hand than Jindal — the former Texas governor had just $45,000 in his campaign account last quarter — he at least had a well-funded supporting super-PAC.

Both Perry and Walker benefited from super-PACs that had more than $15 million that they could spend to boost the candidates. But the main pro-Jindal super-PAC, “Believe Again,” disclosed contributions of $3.7 million in its midyear report.

Now Bobby’s also got a “dark money” 527 nonprofit group plumping for him, and all the outside groups pulled in a reported $8 million as of July. But the Super PAC’s been spending some serious coin on Iowa ads, where Bobby’s actually been doing more paid media than anybody else. So it’s unclear how much is left to get Jindal to the end of the year (Super-PACs and 527s only report semi-annually). What he really needs is some fresh evidence he’s doing as well in Iowa as a September NBC/WSJ poll indicated, which placed him tied with Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio at 6%.

For now, I’d guess Bobby’s staff probably isn’t going to get paid for a while, and non-campaign groups will do more and more of what the campaign ought to be doing. But his money troubles have already caught the attention of media vultures, who will be watching his campaign closely for signs of non-vitality. Couldn’t happen to a nicer guy.

 

By: Ed Kilgore, Contributing Writer, The Political Animal Blog, The Washington Monthly, October 16, 2016

October 17, 2015 Posted by | Bobby Jindal, GOP Campaign Donors, Iowa Caucuses | , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

“Jindal’s Trumpism-Without-Trump Tax Plan”: His Distinctive Tax “Idea” Is One Of The Dumbest In The Conservative Arsenal

With all the excitement going on this week, I totally missed the fact that my favorite Republican presidential candidate, the Gret Stet of Loosiana’s Bobby Jindal, released a tax plan, or at least a tax-based messaging document. WaPo’s Catherine Rampell informs us it’s everything you’d expect from the candidate who’s offering the GOP Trumpism Without Trump:

Jindal — who once declared that the Republican Party needed to stop being the “stupid party” — decided he, too, wanted to pander to stupidity.

That is, he decided to out-Trump Trump.

In a sprawling, largely detail-free plan released Wednesday, Jindal tried his hand at the tax-cut buzz saw. On a static basis, the Tax Foundation estimates, Jindal’s proposal would cut revenue by $11.3 trillion over the next decade.

That’s in the same ballpark as Trump. Yet rather than denying or trying to draw attention away from the gigantic hole he intends to blow in the budget (as Trump and Bush, respectively, have done), Jindal touts it with pride.

“Governor Jindal’s plan reduces the amount of money the federal government will be able to spend,” his Web site boasts, invoking long-ago disproven “starve the beast” rhetoric. The main effect of previous attempts to “starve the beast” through tax cuts, as Jindal surely knows, has not been spending decreases, but subsequently legislated tax increases.

But here’s the fun part:

Jindal’s plan is also, impressively, even more regressive than Trump’s. While Trump would raise the after-tax incomes of the top 1 percent by a mere fifth (21.6 percent), Jindal would increase their incomes by a full quarter (25 percent).

Then, in addition to lowering taxes on the rich, Jindal — but not Trump — would raise taxes on the poor.

Yes, you read that right. Jindal wants to engineer a reverse Robin Hood, taking money from the poor to give to the rich.

As Dylan Matthews explains at Vox, Jindal’s plan would eliminate the child tax credit, the standard deduction, the personal exemption, and the dependent exemption, with the very explicit goal of making everybody, even the poorest Americans, pay income taxes (hey, he does keep the EITC, but maybe that was an oversight!). So in effect his most distinctive tax “idea” is one of the dumbest in the conservative arsenal: going after the “lucky duckies,” the 47% who don’t pay income tax (though they do pay payroll taxes, state and local sales taxes, property taxes, etc. etc.).

At least Bobby’s being consistent: he spent years unsuccessfully trying to get Louisiana to shift from an income tax to a sales tax system for financing state government. Don’t want those job creators to have to pay taxes if they can instead be borne by those proles lucky enough to work for them, right?

Maybe the very conservative voters of Iowa, with whom Jindal is spending most of his time these days, like this approach; you should not underestimate the power of resentment of those people when two or more conservatives gather. But I dunno: as with his efforts to be Mr. Christian Right in a crowded presidential field, I suspect most voters otherwise attracted to Trumpism-Without-Trump would also prefer Jindalism-Without-Jindal.

 

By: Ed Kilgore, Contributing Writer, Political Animal Blog, The Washington Monthly, October 9, 2015

October 10, 2015 Posted by | Bobby Jindal, Donald Trump, Tax Policy | , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

“Political Dead Weight”: Bobby Jindal Is A False Prophet Without Honor In His Own Country

Seems Bobby Jindal might as well spend all his time in Iowa right now. He’s sure as hell not doing himself any good by any time he’s spending in Louisiana, doing the job to which he was elected. Check out the numbers from this new poll of the Pelican State, per WWL-TV in Nawlins.

In a heavily Republican state like Louisiana, there’s a good amount of interest in the Republican presidential primary, but if you think Donald Trump is at the top of the list with voters in this state, think again.

The billionaire real estate mogul may be the candidate grabbing the attention of the public and media, but according to the exclusive WWL-TV/Advocate poll, it’s the more soft-spoken Ben Carson who seems to be winning people over. 23 percent of voters in Louisiana say they would vote for Carson, a retired neurosurgeon, if the Republican presidential primary were held today. 19 percent say they would choose Trump.

“That’s rare right now because most of the polls are showing Trump ahead, and I think that’s largely because Ben Carson has become the favorite of many evangelical Christian conservatives,” said pollster Dr. Ron Faucheux, whose Washington, D.C.-based firm, Clarus Research Group, conducted the survey for WWL-TV and The Advocate.

Hey, wait a minute. Hasn’t Bobby Jindal spent the entire last year making sure nobody could possibly outdo him in pandering to the Christian Right, doing everything short of handling snakes? Isn’t he being supported by the Christian Right megastars of the Duck Dynasty Clan?

The Christian Conservative voting bloc is the same voter base Gov. Bobby Jindal is trying to win over, but the poll puts Jindal in the eighth spot among Louisiana voters surveyed. Despite being the sitting governor, only three percent of voters in this state said they would vote for Jindal.

“Bobby Jindal in Louisiana is political dead weight right now,” said Faucheux.

Wow. These numbers shock even me. Jindal is a false prophet without honor in his own country.

What can Bobby possibly do to deal with this rather emphatic repudiation of his stewardship? I guess he can emulate Carly Fiorina, who argues she was run off at HP not because she had ruined a fine old family-run company through her arrogance, but because she was just too good for the hide-bound suckers who didn’t see a merger with the dying COMPAQ outfit as the keys to the kingdom. Maybe Bobby’s just too good for Louisiana, or really, for America.

 

By: Ed Kilgore, Contributing Writer, Political Animal Blog, The Washington Post, October 2, 2015

October 3, 2015 Posted by | Bobby Jindal, Christian Right, Evangelicals | , , , , , , | 1 Comment

“Jindal To GOP; I’ll Be Your Donald Trump!”: Racist Demagoguery Is Too Important A Task To Be Left To An ‘Egomaniacal Madman’

Well, this is going to be interesting. Donald Trump’s Twitter account has been silent most of the day, and so we haven’t seen any response to Bobby Jindal’s supreme act of provocation at the National Press Club. He is going to be on Greta van Susteran’s show tonight, so maybe he’s saving up some heat-seeking missiles to send Bobby’s way. Will he make exorcism jokes? Mention how reluctant Bobby is to spend time in the state he is supposedly governing, or how unpopular he is there? Mock Jindal’s campaign for resorting to attacks on Trump to get some attention? No telling.

But blowback aside, Jindal’s speech is pretty amazing. It very, very carefully distinguishes between Trump and Trumpism, holding up the latter even as it tears down the former:

I like the idea of a DC outsider.

I like that he doesn’t care about political correctness.

I like the fact that he says things people are thinking but are afraid to say.

I like that he uses Ronald Reagan’s theme of making America Great Again.

Trump’s diagnoses is correct — the professional political class in Washington, including the Republicans, is incompetent and full of nonsense. He is right. The political class in Washington has abandoned us. Trump has performed an important service by taking on the political class and exposing them for being completely full of nonsense.

But Trump doesn’t really believe this stuff, because he only believes in himself.

The message here seems to be that racist demagoguery is too important a task to be left to a “egomaniacal madman” like the guy who’s shown how popular racist demagoguery can be among the GOP rank-and-file.

So Bobby’s offering himself as the vehicle for Trumpism without Trump, or as he puts it, a “politically incorrect conservative revolution.”

I’m not sure what that would look like in practice, but in Bobby’s version it seems to begin with treating Trump the way Trump treats Mexicans: denouncing him in terms that burn any conceivable bridges to smithereens. Indeed, if I were advising Bobby, I’d be a bit worried that he won’t be able to sign the very “loyalty pledge” Trump has signed, which commits the candidate to support of the GOP nominee, even if it’s Trump.

I mean, seriously, listen to this:

Many say he’s dangerous because you wouldn’t want a hot head with his fingers on the nuclear codes. And while that’s true, that’s not the real danger here.

The real danger is that, ironically, Donald Trump could destroy America’s chance to be Great Again.

As conservatives, we have a golden opportunity in front of us. The Democrats have terribly screwed things up, and are basically giving us the next election.

If we blow this opportunity – we may never get it again, the stakes are incredibly high.

It’s true Trump might launch a nuclear war, says Bobby, but “that’s not the real danger here.” Hillary could win the election!

I really didn’t think my opinion of Bobby Jindal could get any lower, or my very low opinion of Donald Trump could get any higher. This continues to be a season of political wonders.

 

By: Ed Kilgore, Contributing Writer, Political Animal Blog, The Washington Monthly, September 9, 2015

 

September 11, 2015 Posted by | Bobby Jindal, Donald Trump, Racism | , , , , , , | 1 Comment

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