If Bobby Jindal wanted to get his name out to the hard-core God-fearing crowd that he means what he says, he’s done it. Good going Bobby!
But, if Jindal wants to be viewed as the latest version of Louisiana’s David Duke, he’s done that too. Way to go, Jindal!
Yesterday was a mind-blower. After a House Committee voted to basically take a so-called religious freedom bill touted by Jindal as one of the three most important issues of this legislative session (along with Common Core and patching up a $1.6B budget deficit), Jindal displayed another act of defiance and hypocrisy. He notified the world he was not finished on the issue. It was time for Plan B, obviously under construction for some time. It was time for a Obama-like executive order to do what the bill was intended to do.
The response, so far, and it is still early, has not been what Jindal might have hoped for. Far from.
I have seen an occasional positive comment on Facebook such as this one:
“Bobby Jindal issues executive orders to uphold laws and the Constitution. Barack Obama issues executive orders to override laws and the Constitution.”
But overall, the articles, columns and the social media comments are like the ones below and I must say I have scoured the Internet for positive-Jindal comments (and if anybody sees one, please forward and I will post them).
Instead, Jindal, for the most part, has done what would seem to be the impossible. He has turned much of Louisiana and the business community against him.
It is not bad enough that he caused the budget shortage by hypocritically telling the world that this state is following the budgeting of the “Louisiana Way”, not the “Washington Way”-- then, inventing all types of gimmicks and tricks to patch former budgets to the point where he cannot fund his fantasies any longer.
Ironically, not only is he going to create a major tax increase for the state for this and future years to come, but, he is making the Louisiana business community shudder in their boots at the black mark he is painting for the state.
In short, I believe Bobby Jindal is morphing into David Duke.
Duke was the racist and neo-nazi who was laughed out of the state a couple of decades ago. He ended up in jail, then Russia, then Iran and now back in Louisiana I am told, again peddling his hate.
It seemed, Duke ran for virtually every office he could find. Getting in front of cameras was quite profitable for his newly-packaged message for middle-class white America. He said he was not a racist and anti-semite, yet, many of us knew the truth. He was and he simply couldn’t hide it, despite his new haircut and other cosmetics.
Finally, the business community had enough of Duke. While many business owners liked anti-affirmative action and welfare statements, deep down, they knew he was simply too hazardous to handle. He would have to go. Even President Bush knew he was corroding the Louisiana Republican brand.
The tourism community and big business in many ways led the charge, just as it is doing now. Duke, as US Senator (and then as Governor), would cause businesses to run, conventions to cancel and Louisiana to remain as the nation’s laughing stock.
Now, it’s Jindal’s turn.
Just as Duke was only about Duke, Jindal is only about Jindal.
Louisiana? Who cares!
For Duke, if it were to sell in Iowa or to the lower-middle classes in Texas and if it were to bring him some glory and more importantly, plenty of money, that’s what mattered.
For Jindal, if it sells in Iowa or New Hampshire and brings him more Fox News appearances, support from extremists and yep, some money, that’s what seems to matter.
Louisiana rejected Duke just as the state’s likely voters have turned their back on Jindal. But, looking at pure numbers, arguably, it is worse for Jindal. During Duke’s prime, in his race against “vote for the crook” Governor Edwards, the great white hope garnered slightly over 38 percent of the vote.
By comparison, Jindal has hovered under 40 and above 25% now for two years. In the latest SMOR poll, just out last week, Jindal only received slightly more than 31% positive.
As a former supporter and prominent business person told me recently, “You don’t start calling businesses, “corporate welfare” for taking advantage of the very policies Jindal promoted. You don’t start putting yourself out as a circus freak to get attention-- as he’s doing on some of these social issues”.
But, Jindal is obviously on a mission, to get whatever national exposure, however he can get it as long as it creates an overall hardcore message—and generates the green stuff in the process.
When he first became governor, some high-profiled conservatives like Gingrich and Limbaugh called him “transformative”.
They are right.
He is fast-transforming Louisiana into a test-tube for budgetary disasters. He is fast-transforming Louisiana into a portrait of dynasty ducksters and religious hucksters.
Perhaps worse, at least for him, he is even faster transforming himself into a Dukester—brand yourself as a nut-cake and zealot, claim you’re not, find the closest TV camera and put out your hand for quick cash.
Probably not exactly what Gingrich and Limbaugh had in mind.
EXTRACTS OF NEWS ITEMS AND OPINIONS
"At any other time in history, the average person could live an entire life without having to publicly articulate a view on lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender politics," said Gene Mills, president of the conservative Louisiana Family Forum and a supporter of the bill. "Now we are being asked to choose sides in the culture war."
"I think that is a legitimate criticism of the governor," said DuBos. "He has lambasted Barack Obama and other democrats for issuing executive orders, and now here he is issuing an executive order and, in this case, to promote his political agenda more than to promote religious liberty."
While it’s commendable for Jindal to stand while Louisiana’s lawmakers cower, it’s worrisome that he’s essentially using Barack Obama’s tactics in pressing change.
“It’s interesting because the Governor has been very critical of the executive actions of President Obama, now he’s doing it here on a state level,” says political analyst Jeff Crouere.
Crouere says major businesses like IBM and Dow Chemical have come out against the measure.
“The loss of conventions, the loss of big sporting events, the loss of tourists coming here,” says Crouere.
What exactly did Bobby Jindal to help pass Mike Johnson’s bill? Outside ofwriting an op-edinThe New York Times that was more for national consumption than to sway votes in Louisiana, not a whole lot. He called it one of his legislative priorities in his speech to the Legislature, but he did very little to advance the messaging on the bill. Jindal also clearly didn’t put pressure on Speaker Chuck Kleckley, who he appointed, to move the bill. In today’s hearing,no one from his administration testified in support of the bill. The Louisiana Family Forum did the heavy hitting on this bill and the Louisiana GOP only started talking about this bill last night.
Since Jindal did virtually nothing to help pass Johnson’s bill, who is the target audience for this executive order? If you guessed social conservatives in Iowa, you’re absolutely right. It coincides with anew ad Jindal is running in that statein order to jump start his soon to be presidential campaign.
All throughout Jindal’s two terms, but especially in his second term, he has been more concerned with his national image than actual results here in Louisiana. Since the passing of education reform at the beginning of his second term, Jindal has done nothing to make Louisiana politics more friendly for conservatives than he found it. It is fitting that the end of Jindal’s reign finds him serving as the tax collector for the Huey Long, Edwin Edwards welfare state and resorting to red meat demagoguery to pander to social conservatives.
Jindal had an opportunity to cement conservative, GOP one-party rule in this state for decades like Huey Long and Edwin Edwards did for the populist/socialist Louisiana Democrat Party but he failed on that count. By making structural changes and reforms to Louisiana state government and introducing party primaries for state elections, conservative Republicans could be running on Jindal’s successes and promising to continue them. Instead, Republicans will only continue to hold power due to an inept, out of touch Louisiana Democrat Party and a jungle primary that now benefits Republicans. Louisiana Republicans now serve as the masters of the bloated welfare state that Long and Edwards built. That is not a prescription for a lasting conservative majority, let alone one that needs to reform the way Louisiana state government does business.
Perhaps if Jindal was more engaged with matters here in Louisiana, both his legislative agenda and his presidential campaignwould be in much better shape.
It’s a principled position that a large majority of Louisianans support, and also one that aids Jindal in his increasingly-likely attempt to win the presidency next year in a Republican nomination process where those agreeing with his preference probably enjoy as large if not larger of a majority on this issue.
So Jindal, one of those calling Obama lawless, intends to govern by fiat, against the will of the people Republicans are always pretending to care about. You see, Republicans only like majorities when majorities go their way.
This morning, Louisiana governor Bobby Jindal’s issue-advocacy group, American Future Project, launched his first campaign ad in Iowa. The ad, entitled “Religious Liberty,” seeks to target a demographic that will be key to his chances of securing the GOP presidential nomination in 2016: social conservatives.
Perry, the head New Orleans tourism official, called the bill “radioactive” and said it would make Louisiana “complicit in officially state-sanctioned bigotry.” Any bid to host a Super Bowl, Final Four or college football championship in New Orleans would be doomed if the measure were approved, he said.
“We’re attempting to ... carve out the ability to discriminate, the ability to be bigoted,” Perry said.