Well, it’s time for another presidential campaign obituary, the fifth in what is statistically guaranteed to be a well-populated feature over the next few months.
Today, we mourn Bobby Jindal, the two-term Republican governor of the great state of Louisiana. He may never have cracked even one percent of voter support in any poll anywhere, or appeared in any of the primetime Republican debates, or raised a significant amount of moneyor made himself known to anyone outside of Louisiana, but he was my absolute favorite male Republican first-generation Christian Indian-American governor, and my second favorite Republican first-generation Christian Indian-American governor after South Carolina’s Nikki Haley.
As always, the death of a Presidential campaign brings with it deep, soul-searching questions: how could this have happened so soon? Why did this have to happen to him? Who is that guy? Maybe these questions have answers, maybe they don’t, but what’s important is that Bobby Jindal touched each of our lives in a special way, or didn’t. I have no way of knowing who is reading this or what your relationship is to Bobby Jindal.
Bobby Jindal was a revolutionary and objectively-relevant person in the Republican presidential primaries. No one else in the varied field could claim to have attempted to govern Louisiana. No other candidate could claim to have the initials B.J. No other candidate went to Britain and claimed that there are “no-go zones” where Muslims “colonize Western countries,” governing themselves and excluding non-Muslims.
But it may have been his fiscal policies that Bobby Jindal will be best remembered for. Jindal was one of the strictest anti-tax, deficit-reducing governors in the nation, and he planned to bring Louisiana’s sweeping economic success to the whole nation. Other candidates may claim to be offering large tax cuts, matched with deep cuts in wasteful entitlement spending, but none went anywhere near as far as Jindal. He planned to cut taxes so low that each year on tax day each American citizen would only owe the government a few cheap bead necklaces, while unemployment and Medicaid benefits would be reduced to simply a view of a few drunk girls’ boobs and a bucket of Popeye’s chicken—all any true American really needs. Even further, he would trim government fat by eliminating Social Security and transferring its duties to the NSA. “Society” and “the nation” are basically the same thing, why was its security ever split into two agencies in the first place?
How could such a perfect candidate have fared so poorly? Alas, among such a varied group of candidates, Jindal failed to lock down the large and crucial Republican constituency of “xenophobic children of immigrants,” which has mostly gone to Ted Cruz, the Canadian-born Cuban American who wants to limit illegal and legal immigration and thinks the best thing we can do to help Cubans is to keep the embargo that has clearly done wonders in weakening the rule of the Castro family. I’m sorry, Bobby, but it’s hard to beat that logic. Better luck next time.
Franklin is a member of the class of 2017.