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Jindal says he's not decided, but he will and will win

Of course U.S. Rep. Bobby Jindal is going to give the required answer to speculation about his running for Louisiana governor in 2007, that for now he’s concentrating on his Congressional job and taking care of important federal issues for the state. Jindal has only participated in electoral politics as a candidate for three years, but, as everybody knows, he’s s fast learner.

Everybody also knows that, barring incredible circumstances, Republican Jindal will stand for governor next year. Even as he said he presently hasn’t made up his mind about it, the things he said in a recent neighborhood group meeting in Shreveport (and even the fact he trecked way out of his district to speak at a meeting comprising of typical citizens) shows he knows that, given any opportunity, not only will he run, he’ll win.

One reason is because he is right on so many issues. While his 2003 opponent and likely opposition next year incumbent Democrat Gov. Kathleen Blanco paid no attention to a bill from the recent legislative session that would have given preferential insurance access to the state’s part-time legislators and seemed likely to sign until, she claimed, an outcry of the citizenry pushed her to veto it, Jindal knew from the start it was bad bill and didn’t need to be awakened and goaded by the public to oppose it. Had Jindal won in 2003, that bill never would have gone anywhere in the legislature, if it ever even got introduced.

A bill (weakly) strengthening ethics concerning disaster recovery contracts and state legislators and their families receiving them died in the Legislature with Blanco not lifting a finger to get it through. Jindal made clear by his remarks that he would have been a governor who would have pressed it to pass the bill.

Another reason Jindal is a strong favorite to win is while Blanco and others talk, he produces for the state, the best example being his continuing successful push to get the state a greater share of extraction revenues dedicated to ameliorating coastal degradation. Contrast this to Blanco’s powerless, ineffective strategy of objecting to lease sales which is designed to garner maximum attention while producing no results. Compared to Jindal’s success, her efforts truly verify the old saying, “you catch more flies with honey than with vinegar.”

Even Jindal’s reelection bid for Congress will set him up nicely for a 2007 run. His district is such that advertising for the contest means saturation of New Orleans and Baton Rouge metropolitan area markets – over a third of the state’s population. He’ll probably use some of his large congressional campaign warchest to remind this part of the state of his preference for issues that resonate with Louisiana’s majority – even if he has no competition at all for his House seat (at best, it will be token).

Whoever Jindal’s opponents may be, they must fervently be hoping that Jindal means that he’s still mulling the contest, because they stand little chance of winning unless there is a possibility he won’t run.

1 comment:

Unknown said...

I was telling my wife about 2 weeks ago that Jindal losing the Governor's race in '03 could be a blessing in disguise if he is successful in passing the offshore revenue bill. However, I am very disappointed in the "compromise" that was reached last week.

I sent a 300 word version of that post to every major newspaper in Louisiana, and the Shreveport Times and Advocate contacted me yesterday about posting it in the letter to editor, so you should see it soon in your paper.

I get a chance to talk to Congressman Ted Poe (R-TX) every now and then. I'm hoping that I will soon be able to ask him why they had to pass a bill with the revenue sharing so much lower than Jindal's proposal. After all, 80% of the nation's oil & gas passes comes through Louisiana in forms of production, refineries, and pipelines. 75% of offshore royalties is fair sharing, not 25 and 50%.