Yesterday, as President Obama was delivering his second press conference, Gov. Bobby Jindal (R-LA) spoke at the NRCC’s largest fundraiser of the year to an audience of more than 1,200 Republicans — including prominent luminaries like House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-OH).
In his speech, Jindal turned to one of the major issues facing the GOP: whether it agrees with Rush Limbaugh’s statement that he wants Obama to fail. Without mentioning Limbaugh, Jindal criticized the recent focus on the remarks, claiming that anyone who disagrees with President Obama is treated as committing “treason.” On whether he personally wants Obama to fail, Jindal simply said, “it depends”:
Make no mistake, anything other than an immediate and compliant — “why no sir, I don’t want the President to fail” is treated as some sort of act of treason, civil disobedience, or political obstructionism. This is political correctness run amok. […]
I will not be brow beaten on this, and I will not kow-tow to their political correctness. We will be the loyal opposition. So… my answer to the question is very simple — “Do you want the President to fail?” It depends on what he is trying to do.
Jindal added, “I want him to succeed,” but only if Obama will “cut taxes on job providers, reduce our national debt, stop the massive explosion of government spending, make good on his promise to seek earmark reforms…and act in a truly bi-partisan fashion.”
Just weeks ago, however, before he gave his widely–panned response to Obama’s address to Congress, Jindal took a more constructive tone. Breaking with the Limbaugh line, Jindal told reporters outside the White House that everyone should want Obama to succeed:
“I think every American is incredibly proud by the president’s personal story, the fact that we will be seeing him addressing his first joint session of Congress,” Jindal said after governors met with Obama on Monday. “We absolutely — Republicans or Democratic governors — we want our president to succeed. When we disagree with him, we will certainly offer alternative ideas and solutions,” he added.
Jindal has previously offered great praise for Limbaugh. “I think Rush is a great leader for conservatives. I think he articulates what a lot of people are concerned about,” he said earlier this month. After previously deviating from Limbaugh and the right wing, Jindal is — like all the others — lurching back towards Boss Limbaugh.