November 17, 2014

Bobby Jindal all but announced he's running for President on "Meet the Press" yesterday.

Did anyone notice? 
CHUCK TODD: All right. I'm going to ask you about your own presidential ambitions. A majority in Louisiana disapprove of your job as governor. Why is that a launching pad to Iowa and New Hampshire?

GOV. BOBBY JINDAL: Chuck, I don't care at all about poll numbers. I never have. The reality is, I was elected in Louisiana to make generational changes. Look at what we've done in Louisiana. So now, we've cut our state budget 26%, cut the number of state employees 34%. We've got the best private-sector economy in a generation. Our economy has grown twice as fast as the national economy. More people working than ever before at a higher income than ever before. We transformed the charity house [?]. That's, like, the third rail in Louisiana politics. Statewide school choice, so our children have the opportunity to get a great education. If I were to run, and I haven't made that decision, if I were to run for president, it's because I believe in our country. The American dream is at jeopardy. This president has defined the American dream as more dependence on the government. We need to restore the American dream. So it's more about opportunity and growth and not redistribution.
That was — it seemed to me — a carefully prepared sound bite, complete with campaign theme: restore the American dream.

The line "Our economy has grown twice as fast as the national economy" jumped out at me, because in the just-concluded gubernatorial election in Wisconsin, Scott Walker's Democratic Party opponent Mary Burke continually referred to the national average:
“If our state economy in Wisconsin had grown at just the national average over the last three years while Gov. Walker is in office, our state’s economy would be $4 billion a year bigger.  4 billion,” said Burke.
I heard her say words to that effect repeatedly. I assume America is looking for a governor as the next President. What must Jindal do to rise within the group? Well, it seems he can point to accomplishments, and some of this material puts him distinctly ahead of Walker.

There's not only that economic growth, but also statewide school choice. By the way, I took Jindal's quote from the linked MTP transcript, but I also checked it against my DVR recording, and corrected the phrase "school of choice" to "school choice." Jindal tends to speak quickly and garble words as he speeds along. It's great to have so many achievements that it's hard to squeeze them into the time Chuck Todd will allot you, but it can be wearying to the point where the listener just gives up.

I wondered if phrase "the charity house" was correct and took the trouble to listen to the recording about 10 times. I couldn't figure out anything it could have been but "charity house." What's "the charity house"?  It's "like, the third rail in Louisiana politics"? So... some weird thing about Louisiana politics... one always hears about that... Huey Long... whatever... I forget... How else is a normal person supposed to hear and process material like that.

Now, I am taking the trouble this morning to Google key words, and I feel sure Jindal was trying to say "the charity hospital." The transformation of the charity hospitals seems to be a great achievement of Jindal's, yet in his effort to launch himself as a presidential candidate, he left us utterly puzzled.

Sharpen up, Bobby. You may be the best candidate, but if you don't slow down and articulate, no one will notice.

36 comments:

Tank said...

The most interesting thing about this post (to me) is the way the question was asked:

CHUCK TODD: All right. I'm going to ask you about your own presidential ambitions. A majority in Louisiana disapprove of your job as governor. Why is that a launching pad to Iowa and New Hampshire?


Will Chuck Todd use a similar setup when he talks to Hillary? Or any Democrat?

As to Jindal, he does not have the charisma to attract enough voters (JMHO). Although, maybe I have no feel for that because I still don't get what Zero's charisma is. Is it that amazing that a black man can speak in full sentences, have a wife and kids and play golf?

Ann Althouse said...

"Is it that amazing that a black man can speak in full sentences, have a wife and kids and play golf?"

Leaving aside your characterization of Jindal's race, I will repeat that I am criticizing Jindal's speech. It doesn't get the points across well enough. I had to get the transcript, listen to the audio 10 times, Google, and read separate articles to understand what "charity house... the third rail in Louisiana politics" was supposed to mean.

Jane the Actuary said...

I really like Jindal.

So much so that I started a more caveatted comment, then deleted a paragraph of "yes but" -- because his deficiencies in content he's smart enough that he can fix over time. And, unlike Obama who gets all kinds of adulation for being smart without much evidence except a certain way of carrying himself, Jindal really is smart, and has a lot of accomplishments. Real accomplishments, not just pretty speeches.

His biggest deficit is that he's a dork. I mean, he's also a Louisiana good old boy, but he just comes off dorky, and Americans are pretty judgy about that.

DKWalser said...

Sharpen up, Bobby. You may be the best candidate, but if you slow down and articulate, no one will notice.

Shouldn't the last sentence read: "ou may be the best candidate, but if you DON'T slow down and articulate, no one will notice?"

Martha said...

Yes, Jindal was talking about Charity Hospital. Any Louisiana native would have heard that correctly but I agree with Ann. Jindal speaks so quickly he loses his audience. You cannot digest his words before more are thrust at your ears.

Senator Mike Lee, conservative R-Utah, appeared on Face the Nation Sunday morning. He lacks anything resembling Obama's charisma but I found it easy to listen to his rational and reassuring voice and words. No dazzle dazzle but convincing.

paminwi said...

I really like Jindal, too. I agree he speaks really quickly (unlike a traditional southerner - stereotype alert!). He has truly benefitted from the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina since so many schools were trashed and they had to be rebuilt, as did the staffing and bureaucracy of the educational system.

Tank said...

Leaving aside your characterization of Jindal's race, I will repeat that I am criticizing Jindal's speech. It doesn't get the points across well enough. I had to get the transcript, listen to the audio 10 times, Google, and read separate articles to understand what "charity house... the third rail in Louisiana politics" was supposed to mean.

I was talking about Zero's race and charisma.

The way that Jindal talks is part of his lack of charisma. He does not talk like a President.

Mark Daniels said...

Jindal's demeanor, unlike his politics, has always reminded me of Jimmy Carter's. I wonder if anybody else has had the same reaction.

He dismisses the significance of his poll ratings in Louisiana. But I wonder how those ratings will impact his ability to raise money for a presidential campaign. I don't imagine that Jindal has a reliable pool of big money contributors on the order of what likely is enjoyed by potential candidates like Jeb Bush, John Kasich, and others. (By the way, if Jeb Bush runs, I'm sure that Rob Portman will not. His big money comes from many of the same sources from which the Bush family draws for their campaigns.)

Kelly said...

I'd take Jindal or just about any republican Governor for President. The senators Cruz and Paul need not apply.

Ann Althouse said...

"Shouldn't the last sentence read: "ou may be the best candidate, but if you DON'T slow down and articulate, no one will notice?"

Thanks. Fixed.

m stone said...

Time for an AA poll. Slow talking vs...

I'm a fan of fast talkers who have something to say and don't measure every word before they say them. (They know their material.) They have to be sharp and reactive, and Jindal is in my opinion. Yes, articulation is important but it can be achieved.

Politicians like professors (I was one) can be lively and engaging. The audience, minus a few "visual" people, appreciate it.

Watching clips of John F.Kennedy press conferences reveals the only president in my lifetime who spoke rapidly and was genuinely vivacious.

Formal presidential speeches are another matter.

April Apple said...

Tank - exactly. The MSM poses everything, all the time, with the R-party, as a negative.

The Dems get positive spin. Always. It's not some of the time, it's all of the time.

Farmer said...

Ann Althouse said...

Thanks. Fixed.


Slow down!

April Apple said...

If anything the R should start out by saying something like
"I'm glad to be here, talking to a democrat."

The Godfather said...

Jindal has been elected governor twice, in each case with a substantial majority in the weird Louisiana system where multiple candidates run in the first round, and then the top two square off in the second round if no one gets a majority. Jindal got clear majorities in the first round both times. In 2011, he got 66% of the vote. Can someone tell me what he's done in the last three years to turn a majority against him?

Insufficiently Sensitive said...

Well, it seems he can point to accomplishments, and some of this material puts him distinctly ahead of Walker.

But making his accomplishments in the face of months of howling mobs trumpeted nationwide by the 'progressive' media? Don't sell Walker short.

TreeJoe said...

The great thing about Jindal is that he's a content-oriented speaker, adapts to the environment when speaking, and is LESS prone to repeat sound bites ad nauseaum.

That's a great thing in the Republican pressure cooker because it will cast a harsher light on those who did not live up to such standards.

Regardless of whether Jindal will become a nominee, the better the overall quality of candidates the more quickly the lower quality candidates are pushed out of the race - and the better the general electorate sees the party as they select a nominee.

By comparison, look at 2008's republican party options. Terrible, terribly presented, and brought down the entire party as a result. And that meant the entire country had a lower quality set of candidates. Bad for country.

PatHMV said...

He's referring to the charity hospital system in Louisiana. The system has been largely privatized, with operation of the various charity hospitals around the state outsourced to other, non-government hospitals and hospital systems. In Louisiana, charity hospital care has historically been a state rather than a local function.

Shanna said...

I don't really think it's a problem that he's talking about something you don't understand (the charity hospital system I guess), because he made it clear in that statement that it is a louisiana thing that he tackled, despite it being something politicians don't want to touch. That means, he has guts and that's all you really need to know. If you want to know more about minute local stuff, you can always look it up (as you did).

I like people who talk fast if they have something to say. I dislike people who talk slowly and say nothing. And vice versa.

trumpetdaddy said...

Yankees making stereotypes alert. Althouse, Louisianans don't speak slowly. Particularly those from New Orleans and Baton Rouge. They have a more "New York/east coast" pace of talking than other southerners. Remember, Louisiana was as much an ethnic and cultural melting pot as New York, and for a longer period of time.

Combine that cultural environment of his youth, plus his extensive east coast and overseas education, it should be no surprise that Gov. Jindal speaks quickly. But plenty of other Louisianans speak just as quickly.

Jim said...

Two different waitresses this weekend had that super fast over driven delivery this weekend. I find it very annoying when people speak too fast.

Ctmom4 said...

I prefer people that talk fast, maybe because I grew up in NY.

Jindal really is the smartest guy in any room, unlike O who thinks he is. But I agree that he is charisma challenged, and won't appeal to the Low Information Voter.

David said...

I didn't notice.

NFL Sunday. Audience not focused on politics.

Rookie mistake by Jindal to do this Sunday AM. Back to the taxi squad, Bobby.

damikesc said...

Gov Doyle paid Gruber about $400,000 to bullshit WI voters.

Remind Democrat voters that every time they mention anything about how bad a governor Walker is.

damikesc said...

Gov Doyle paid Gruber about $400,000 to bullshit WI voters.

Remind Democrat voters that every time they mention anything about how bad a governor Walker is.

Martha said...

Just listened to Jindal on Meet the Press again. He is impressive-- I bet Jindal knows more about how Medicaid works than Obama and more about Obamacare than Gruber.

From his Wiki bio:
In 1996, Governor Murphy Foster appointed Jindal Secretary of the Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals, and in 1999 he was appointed President of the University of Louisiana System. In 2001, Jindal was appointed as the principal adviser to Tommy Thompson, the United States Secretary of Health and Human Services by President George W. Bush.

Anonymous said...

I really like Jindal also.

Sadly, he's not a front guy, he's a more behind the scenes, wonkish type of guy.

I think it would be really smart of Walker, Cruz, Carson or the like to bring Jindal onboard as Vice President. He would be able to get a lot of real work done in Washington.

mccullough said...

Jindal will do. He can point to reforms and the next presidential election will be all about Reform.

What will Hillary run on?

Michael Fitzgerald said...

The most important and impressive takeaway from Jindal's statement is that he cut the number of state employees by 34%. This is a critical necessity to establish fiscal balance. No state, no company can ever be profitable when they are on the hook for the medical, dental and cost-of-living-adjusted pensions of every employee who ever worked for them. Organizations like the USPS run ruinous deficits for this reason. Walker touched this issue when he fought for public employees in Wisconsin to pay some fraction of their own health insurance. In contrast, during the presidential debates in 2008, Obama said that in order to boost the economy, he would immediately hire 600, 000 federal employees. Nobody challenged this absurd assertion that putting over half a million more people on the federal teat would improve the American fiscal situation. The presidents to come are going to need to do some bloodletting in the government employee arena. On the topic of Jindal's manner of speech, I see that Althouse's criticisms of republican presidential candidates Walker and Jindal has so far amounted to one's not charismatic enough and the other one talks too fast. Of course, in her progressive democrat snobbery she'll contend that she only points it out because it matters to those other people, the stupid Americans who can't see past a glib speech and superficial appearance.

MadisonMan said...

He would be able to get a lot of real work done in Washington.

That's really not the function of a Vice President.

averagejoe said...

That democrat party dick attachment Cuck Todd let Secretary Burwell announce that Obamacare was never more popular, because 100,000 people visiting some website. Meanwhile, Ace of Spades reveals approval rating of Obamacare polling at 37%. In the next segment, Cuck tells Jindal, without ever citing the source for his figure, that a majority of Louisiana voters disapprove of his performance. Meanwhile upthread, The Godfather informs us that Jindal received 66% of the vote when he was elected. Cuck is really angling to be a moderator for the next presidential debates, isn't he?

The Godfather said...

OK, I've done a little research. It looks like Jindal's actions on the charity hospitals was controversial, and cost him support, but seems to be working out pretty well. The other thing is that he tried to eliminate the state income tax and raise the sales tax, and this was not popular. I guess he's term-limited, so he used his second term to try to do the right thing, in his opinion.

Michael K said...

Jindal had better be careful about his clothes. Even Boris Johnson is outraged.

Insufficiently Sensitive said...

By comparison, look at 2008's republican party options. Terrible, terribly presented, and brought down the entire party as a result. And that meant the entire country had a lower quality set of candidates. Bad for country.

Hear, hear!

Steve said...

I predict an anti-charisma election. The nominee from the charisma party has won for at least the last 24 years. Bush (HW) might be debatable.

I don't know about anyone else but I think it is high time we had someone with qualities other than charisma in the White House.

I am tired of the charisma-ist media propping up clearly unqualified candidates and blasting the reputation of those that show any skill in actually (you know) governing.

Kirk Parker said...

Jim,

Enough about the waitresses speaking to quickly, let's cut to the important questions:

1. Were they hot?

2. Did they wear offensively-illustrated bowling shirts?



MadMan,

It certainly was the function for Cheney.