Political Animal


December 03, 2012 2:30 PM Bobby’s Big Day

By Ed Kilgore

So Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal popped up twice on the political news aggregators today: first because of a puffy McKay Coppins Buzzfeed column about how his BFF relationship with Rick Perry has positioned him excellently for a 2016 presidential run, and the second when a state judge in Baton Rouge declared his school voucher program unconstitutional.

Coppins’ account makes some sense: Jindal’s yeoman services for Perry’s doomed presidential bid earned him some face-time in Iowa; good will with Perry’s well-heeled donors (who probably appreciated the former Rhodes Scholar all the more after watching their money go down the drain when Perry went all glassy-eyed and moss-tongued in the debates); and some additional street cred with national conservative folk who initially greeted Perry as their political Savior. His speeches also blurred memories of his semi-disastrous 2009 SOTU rebuttal.

While the state court decision is ostensibly a setback for Jindal (and a reflection of how poorly and hastily his voucher program—which channeled public school funds to some private schools that seemed to exist purely and simply to serve as conservative evangelical madrassas—was put together, the extended appeal process will also gain him invaluable publicity nationally as a champion of educational “choice” and an enemy of the evil secularist teachers’ unions. This is political legal tender in places like Iowa, where the Christian Right remains strong and hostility to public schools is a watchword among conservative “base” voters and activists.

All in all, it’s a good day politically for Bobby Jindal. If he could only exorcise his “exorcism problem,” he’d rank already as a top-tier candidate for 2016.

Ed Kilgore is a contributing writer to the Washington Monthly. He is managing editor for The Democratic Strategist and a senior fellow at the Progressive Policy Institute. Find him on Twitter: @ed_kilgore.


  • barkleyg on December 03, 2012 3:59 PM:

    "which channeled public school funds to some private schools that seemed to exist purely and simply to serve as conservative evangelical madrassas"

    Thanks for calling a spade a spade.

    The big difference between the Muslim Taiban and American CHRISTIAN Taliban is while beheading is preferred by the former, good ol LYNCHING is preferred by our home grown SCHMUCKS!!

  • Raenelle on December 03, 2012 4:01 PM:

    Nah. Jindal's Kenneth problem will kill him for 2016. After Romney, the Repubs aren't going to do prissy again.

  • c u n d gulag on December 03, 2012 4:15 PM:

    Is Buzzfeed in a state that legalized marijuana?

    If not, then there's no excuse for this kind of sycophantic idiocy.

  • Peter C on December 03, 2012 5:02 PM:

    Jindal has all the charisma and appeal of your average oil-soaked mollusk on the half-shell. He's been a dud ever since the Obama's first State of the Union rebuttal.

  • kindness on December 03, 2012 5:29 PM:

    Yes but Jindal has some belief issues. He isn't just a born again guy, he's a born again and crazy mofo guy.

    Might go down well some places but at the national level, I expect not.

  • roshan on December 03, 2012 5:30 PM:

    Nope. Jindal is going to go nowhere in the GOP presidential race. Because he is a brown skinned minority. Rubio might bypass this issue though. But the fact remains that whatever the buzzfeed reporter wrote is essentially tripe and also highlights another fact that internet media is going to look like beltway journalism full of hacks when it eschews facts and writes about things like "mojo".

  • ET on December 04, 2012 9:13 AM:

    That judged did the state and Jindal (even if he doesn't recognize it) a HUGE favor. Say what you want about the concept of vouchers the plan as "developed" was a big pile of CRAP. It wasn't going to be long before that was going to be obvious to even the most strident supporters of vouchers because we are talking Louisiana here. They can't do much right when it comes to "governing" themselves (and I grew up there).

  • Brian on December 04, 2012 1:59 PM:

    Do any of the potential donors know his real name is Piyush'?