Jin­dal joins Repub­li­can field

Louisiana gover­nor speaks of tak­ing on ‘ big gov­ern­ment.’

Los Angeles Times - - THE NATION - By Kur­tis Lee kur­tis. lee@ latimes. com

Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jin­dal an­nounced Wed­nes­day that he would seek the 2016 Repub­li­can pres­i­den­tial nom­i­na­tion, join­ing a crowded field as a long- shot can­di­date with dis­mal polling num­bers rel­a­tive to his fel­low can­di­dates and with his con­stituents at home.

Jin­dal, a sec­ond- term gover­nor, high­lighted his ten­ure in of­fice, dur­ing which he has down­sized state gov­ern­ment and fought for tax cuts, ac­tions that are widely pop­u­lar among the Repub­li­can base.

“We did what they said could not be done. We shrank gov­ern­ment.… The big- gov­ern­ment crowd fought us ev­ery step of the way,” he said, not­ing he’d cut the num­ber of state gov­ern­ment work­ers by 34% and lim­ited the num­ber of “bu­reau­crats.”

Jin­dal said that there were “a lot of great talk­ers run­ning for pres­i­dent” but that none of them could talk about lim­it­ing gov­ern­ment the way he had in Louisiana.

“We’ve had enough talk­ers. It’s time for a doer,” he said in a speech out­side New Or­leans. “I’m not run­ning for pres­i­dent to be some­body; I’m run­ning for pres­i­dent to do some­thing.”

An In­dian Amer­i­can and the f irst sit­ting gover­nor to en­ter the pres­i­den­tial con­test, Jin­dal has also served one term in the U. S. House. He was trum­peted af­ter the 2012 elec­tion as a for­mi­da­ble con­tender for 2016.

But sev­eral na­tional sur­veys of the GOP field, which in­cludes more than a dozen can­di­dates, show him with about 1% sup­port. In Louisiana, his ap­proval rat­ings this spring hov­ered near 30%, stem­ming largely from his han­dling of the state’s re­cent $ 1.6- bil­lion bud­get short­fall.

His low polling num­bers and weak name iden­ti­fi­ca­tion na­tion­ally could keep his cam­paign from gain­ing mo­men­tum. He might be left out of the f irst Repub­li­can de­bates of the cam­paign in Au­gust and Septem­ber, as new rules al­low only the 10 can­di­dates with the high­est polling num­bers to par­tic­i­pate.

Sean Gard­ner Getty I mages

“I ’ M NOT run­ning for pres­i­dent to be some­body; I’m run­ning for pres­i­dent to do some­thing,” Jin­dal said.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.