Path to White House: Why it seems like a dreary picture for Bobby Jindal?



By Prachi Mishra

Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal recently took to twitter to announce that he is running for Presidential elections in United States of America.

With this announcement, several statements deeming Jindal as having odd chances at winning the elections have also started doing the rounds in the media circuit.

A recent poll conducted by CNN showed that winning the election is a long shot for Jindal, as he was placed at the bottom of the field, registering only 1% of support.

Many have been asserting that Jindal had a fair chance of winning the elections in 2012. However, this time his path to the White House seems to be a bit difficult.

Drop in popularity in Louisiana

Jindal started on a high note as Louisiana governor. His handling of Hurricane Gustav in 2008 brought widespread accolades, contrary to his predecessor’s handling of Katrina in 2005.

However, now his popularity, in his own state has taken a toll as he nears the end of his tenure. He has been consistently criticized for focusing more on laying the groundwork for a presidential run than on Louisiana’s fiscal troubles.

The primary reason for the dip in Jindal’s popularity is because of his handling of the state’s budget woes. In the recent past Louisana has faced severe budget troubles and additional reductions to state services. His refusal to raise taxes to help balance the state’s books has caused budget cuts to popular programs including health care and education sectors.

The huge dip in his popularity came to the fore with a recent poll conducted by CNN, showing his approval in his own state, at a mere 32 per cent.

“Governor Jindal has failed Louisiana in every way possible, and there’s no reason to believe he will have any more success as a candidate than he did as governor, ”State Senator Karen Carter Peterson, was reported as saying by a media outlet.

#BobbyJindalIsSoWhite: Disowning his roots

Jindal is facing a lot of flak on Twitter after he, while launching his presidential bid, tweeted that doesn’t want to be called an Indian-American.

The Indian- American community slammed Jindal for his tweet and started trending #BobbyJindalIsSoWhite to mock him.

The jokes were started by professional Indian-American comics Hari Kondabolu and Asif Mandvi.

Earlier in January this year, he had asserted that he didn’t believe in hyphenated identities, adding that his parents came to the US from India to become ‘Americans’ and not ‘Indian-Americans’.

Difficulty in emerging from the ‘pack’

With the announcement, Jindal has become the 13th major Republican candidate to enter the race, along with Texas Senator Ted Cruz, former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee, neurosurgeon Ben Cars et al.

Several of the candidates have a much higher profiles and more prominent political victories as compared to Jindal’s.

Despite acknowledging the fact he had brought reforms in his state, it can’t be denied that the other candidates too have achieved rehabilitation for their respective states.

In order to emerge from the ‘pack’ of and distinguish himself, Jindal will have to bring some serious efforts to clear the route for him.

Running for presidential elections might be an uphill task for Jindal, but not an impossible one, provided he revives his reputation that has dropped immensely in the recent past.