Posts Tagged ‘Bobby Jindal’

My friend and former colleague John Mercurio makes a good argument for why Bobby Jindal won’t even run for the GOP nomination in 2012.

Louisiana chooses its governors in off years, which means Jindal, who has already announced plans to seek a second term, will likely have his name on a state ballot in November 2011. That’s just a few short months before Iowa caucusgoers will cast the first votes of the 2012 primaries. Other Republican candidates already will have spent months participating in a dizzying round of televised debates and town-hall forums. (Remember how Fred Thompson was widely panned for joining the 2008 race too late? He announced in September 2007.)

The prospect of Jindal seeking both offices in 2011 would require political contortions the likes of which even he would be hard-pressed to perform. Imagine him urging Louisiana voters, still recovering from Hurricanes Katrina and Rita, to support his re-election so he can spend the next year as an absentee governor, traveling the country as a presidential candidate. He could deny charges, likely to come from all corners, that he’s using his re-election bid as a launching pad for the White House. But if he reverses course after November and runs for president, he would face the impossible task of assembling a last-minute national organization at the same time he’s suffering a fatal blow to his credibility.

Elsewhere, the Bobby Jindal/Kenneth the Page comparisons have gone viral. Check out this clip:

Jindal should consider himself fortunate that Jack McBrayer (the actor who plays Kenneth the Page on 30 Rock) doesn’t bear an uncanny physical resemblance to him. Otherwise, Jindal would be getting the full Tina Fey/Sarah Palin treatment. On the other hand, Ben Smith pointed out the new Facebook group calling for Kal Penn (of Harold and Kumar fame) to play Bobby Jindal on SNL.

Update: Andrew Sullivan nails it — “All that really happened here is that Jindal – stylistically and substantively – had the worst debut on national television of anyone since Palin’s encounter with Katie Couric.”

Louisiana governor and rumored 2012 presidential candidate Bobby Jindal was tapped to give the GOP rebuttal to Barack Obama’s first address to Congress. John Cole brutally explains the sacrificial lamb nature of this political tradition. It seems especially relevant this year considering Obama’s well known reputation as a public speaker. Anybody who would have to follow him would have an easier time taking the stage after the Rolling Stones or U2.

Now, in fairness, the responses are always awful. Every year (with the exception of Jim Webb) someone is trotted out and forced to give the response, and it is at this point the political equivalent of throwing a virgin into a volcano. It is beyond time for them to end. However, there was something just especially awful this year, and already the comparison to Kenneth from 30 Rock is sweeping across the intertubes.

Jindal’s speech is being panned left, right, and center, with some of the harshest and most surprising criticism coming from his own party.

This was not a good national coming out party for Jindal, especially if he has presidential ambitions in 2012. However, one bad national speech does not mean it’s the end of your aspirations for higher office. Remember Bill Clinton’s much panned speech during the 1988 Democratic National Convention? He went on to bigger and better things four short years later.