Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich (R-Ga.) said Sunday that Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal “would be far and away the best candidate” to appear on the Republican presidential ticket with Sen. John McCain (Ariz.).
Gingrich, who appeared on CBS’s “Face the Nation,” heaped praise upon the former congressman, saying that he is a “spectacular” governor and predicted that Jindal would be a presidential candidate in the future.
I agree that Jindal’s young political career has been praiseworthy. But it would seem McCain’s one obvious advantage (experience) would suddenly be neutralized if the 37-year old Jindal were his running mate. With McCain not being able to substantively set himself apart from Obama on such key issues as Immigration, the Environment and Taxes, the inexperience card may be played heavily. However, that would be a mistake according to Gingrich:
“Obama is a very articulate, very intelligent, Harvard law graduate, who is extraordinarily smart, and he’s not going to come across in a debate like some guy who’s dopey,” Gingrich said. “He’s going to come across as fully prepared. He knows how to study all this stuff. He has the military advisers.”
However, Gingrich added, “The problem with Obama is he’s wrong. It’s not that he’s inexperienced. It’s that his policies are wrong.”
Certainly Jindal’s track record could energize the conservative base. But it seems he would be better suited to not tie himself to a sitting US Senator who was just as likely to vote with the Democrats as his own party. Besides, another four to eight years in the capacity of Governor of Louisiana would certainly hone Jindal’s experience in an executive position of government. As evidenced by four of our last five Presidents having been governors, the voting public often longs for Washington outsiders.
Given that four years of an Obama presidency could resemble the Jimmy Carter faux pas of the late 70s (not that I’m hoping for that), a Jindal candidacy in 2012 may be analogous to the 1980 run of a certain Governor of California.