Still smarting from their defeat last week in the presidential election, conservatives are already talking about who will potentially become the GOP standard bearer in 2016 as Republicans hope to win the White House back from Democrats.
Most political observers say the GOP field will be much stronger than it was for the 2012 presidential election, which some of the biggest rising stars in the party sitting out and biding their time. Louisiana governor Bobby Jindal is among them and the pro-life conservative governor is mum on whether he will jump in the race.
Still, he is speaking out about the state of the GOP and what it needs to do to improve on Tuesday’s loss to pro-abortion President Barack Obama.
“I got the best job in the world and I’m going to be focused on being governor of this great state for the next three years and being chairman of RGA next year and getting a bunch of great Republican governors elected,” he said in an interview with Politico published Tuesday morning.
Jindal’s answer, which the outlet says was a “dodge” to a direct question about a run for president, comes as he prepares to take the helm of the Republican Governors Association. Next year two governorships currently held by Republicans will be on the ballot.
Jindal has been seen for several years as a rising star in the GOP who is well-versed in the policy issues, especially entitlements and spending.
In the interview, he said the GOP needs to “stop being the stupid party” and truly expand its tent.
“It is no secret we had a number of Republicans damage our brand this year with offensive, bizarre comments – enough of that,” he said, according to Politico. “It’s not going to be the last time anyone says something stupid within our party, but it can’t be tolerated within our party. We’ve also had enough of this dumbed-down conservatism. We need to stop being simplistic, we need to trust the intelligence of the American people and we need to stop insulting the intelligence of the voters.”
Jindal initially backed the presidential bid of his western neighbor Gov. Rick Perry, then campaigned for and alongside Mitt Romney.
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Jindal is solidly pro-life and, earlier this year, signed into law a key pro-life bill that allows women a chance to see an ultrasound of their unborn baby before considering an abortion. Jindal also signed SB 330 by Sen. Rick Ward. The pro-life bill creates a specific crime for performing an abortion in Louisiana if the abortionist is not licensed to practice medicine in Louisiana. The legislation also creates the crime of aggravated criminal abortion by dismemberment when the unborn child is dismembered in the course of a criminal abortion.
Later, he signed the Pain Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, a bill that would ban abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy based on the science showing unborn children feel pain at that point.
Governor Jindal said, “It is incumbent upon us to protect the weakest and most vulnerable among us, and these new laws will protect innocent human life.”
In 2011, Jindal signed a bill designed to prevent women from being pressured into having an abortion they may not otherwise want and that the state legislature approved by large margins.
In 2009, he signed a measure that gives pro-life doctors and other medical professionals more conscience protections on abortion under state law. The covers both public and private health care workers and allows them to opt out of involvement in abortions.