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Bobby Jindal set to join 2016 White House race

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Washington: Louisiana Governor Piyush “Bobby” Jindal is widely expected to launch a bid for the Republican Presidential nomination on Wednesday, becoming the first Indian-American and 13th Republican to join the 2016 White House race.

“If I decide to announce on June 24th that I will seek the Republican nomination for President, my candidacy will be based on the idea that the American people are ready to try a dramatically different direction,” he said in a statement earlier this month.

“We don’t need just small changes, we need a dramatically different path,” said Jindal, who as a child changed his first name to Bobby, after a character in the ‘Brady Bunch’.

US-born son of immigrant parents from India, he converted from Hinduism to Christianity. As a student at the Brown University, he was later baptised as a Catholic .

Once viewed as a rising star of the Republican Party, Jindal, 44, who was the youngest American Governor when first elected in 2007, is now polling toward the bottom of the Republican field, registering at just 1 per cent in the latest CNN/ORC poll this month.

Jindal is entering an already crowded field of Republican candidates including Jeb Bush, Rick Perry and Mike Huckabee, former Governors of Florida, Texas and Arkansas respectively, US Senators Ted Cruz, Rand Paul, Marco Rubio and Lindsey Graham, former Hewlett Packard CEO Carly Fiorina; and real estate mogul Donald Trump.

Jindal was the second Indian-American to be elected to the US House of Representatives in 2004, after Dalip Singh Saund, a Democrat, in 1957. He was re-elected to the Congress in 2006 before making his second run for the position of Governor in 2007. He was re-elected in 2011.

Jindal, who received wide support from the Indian-Americans in his Congressional and Gubernatorial campaigns seems to have lost much traction with the community since he recently declared that he was tired of being a hyphenated American.

His parents, he declared, weren’t coming to raise Indian-Americans but just Americans.

Pearson Cross, a Political Science professor at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette, who is writing a book on him told the Washington Post, “There’s not much Indian left in Bobby Jindal.”

(IANS)

 

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White House Denies Any Direct Talks Yet Between Trump And Kim

No direct talks yet between Trump, Kim: White House

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Donald Trump is the President of U.S.
FILE IMAGE- Donald Trump

The White House has denied any direct talks yet between US President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, though Washington has spoken to Pyongyang “at the highest levels”.

The White House statement on Tuesday came minutes after Trump seemingly hinted that he has already spoken with Kim, Xinhua news agency reported.

When asked by reporters if he had spoken directly with Kim, Trump had said “yes”.

In the statement, issued after the confusing incident, the White House said, “In regards to talks with leader Kim Jong-un, the President said the administration has had talks at the highest levels” and added that they were not with him directly.

On Tuesday afternoon, Trump himself also said that Washington and Pyongyang have already started direct talks at “very high levels,” without specifying how “high” the level was.

Kim Jong-un And Donald Trump
Kim Jong-un And Donald Trump

“We have had direct talks at very high levels, extremely high levels with North Korea,” Trump said. He might have hinted at CIA Director Mike Pompeo’s reportedly top-secret visit to North Korea over Easter weekend as his envoy.

The trip made by Pompeo was an effort to lay the groundwork for direct talks between the leaders of the two countries. No official confirmation of Pompeo’s visit has come yet.

Trump was expected to meet Kim in May or early June. The venue of the meeting was still to be decided. Trump said that five sites were being weighed and none of them were located in the US.

Also Read: China And Russia Accused of Manipulating Their Currencies By Trump

Tension on the Korean Peninsula has thawed over the last few months. The South and North have agreed to hold an inter-Korean summit on April 27, the first meeting between the leaders of the two sides in 11 years.

“They do have my blessing to discuss the end of the war,” said Trump on Tuesday, referring to the summit.

The 1950-1953 Korean war ended in an armistice. The Korean Peninsula remains technically in a state of war.  IANS

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