Wednesday, 18 November 2015

Jindal drops out of White House race

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Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal (R) on Tuesday announced he is suspending his campaign for the White House.

"I've come to the realization that it is not my time," Jindal said during an early evening Fox News interview with Bret Baier. "I am suspending my campaign for president of the United States.

“I cannot tell you what an honor it has been to run for president of the United States,” he added.

Jindal’s campaign failed to resonate with voters since his entrance into the 2016 race last summer.

He never appeared in a main stage GOP presidential debate based on his low polling numbers, which often have registered at or below 1 percent.

During the Fox interview, Jindal declined to immediately name a GOP rival that he would support. Fourteen candidates remain in the Republican race.

"Going forward, I believe we have to be the party of growth and we can never stop being the party that believes in opportunity," Jindal said in a statement on his decision.

"We cannot settle for The Left’s view of envy and division. We have to be the party that says everyone in this country - no matter the circumstances of their birth or who their parents are – can succeed in America," he added.

Jindal is the third Republican presidential candidate to drop out of the race, after former Texas Gov. Rick Perry and Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker.

Perry dropped out of the race in September after the first GOP debate, while Walker dropped out later that month after the second debate.

Jindal, who leaves office in January, said that he would return to the America Next think tank that he established.

Jindal, a Christian and fierce advocate for religious liberty, had hung his long shot bid on winning Iowa, but he never gained traction with conservatives in the Hawkeye State.

On Tuesday, Jindal sat at just over 3 percent in the polls there, according to the RealClearPolitics average, despite spending as much time in the state as anyone. He raised just more than a half-million dollars last quarter, making it very difficult for him to last until the first votes are cast in early February.

Jindal was largely relegated to the margins in the GOP race as Ben Carson, Sen. Ted Cruz (R- Texas) and others vacuumed up support from the social conservatives and Evangelicals that Jindal needed in his camp.

His rivals will not miss his presence on the campaign trail, as he frequently slammed the other GOP contenders for being all talk and no action. Jindal also often took aim at Republican
leadership in Washington as being spineless and “Democrat-lite.”

Jindal regularly pointed to his record as governor in Louisiana to back up his criticism of the other contenders.

He sued the federal government to rid his state of Common Core, signed a controversial executive order meant to protect religious liberty in the state after similar legislation in other states provoked huge backlash, and has
said Louisiana will not accept Syrian refugees in accordance with an Obama administration plan.

Jindal also has perhaps the most hawkish fiscal records of any governor running for president, refusing to raise taxes even as his state scrambled to fill holes in the budget.

But ultimately Jindal could not cut through the huge and fractured GOP field, leaving a very small imprint on the race. Many believe he was running to angle for a Cabinet slot in a future Republican administration.

Perry praised Jindal's decision Tuesday evening in an Instagram post .

"Bobby Jindal [is a] great governor, standup friend, loyal American," he wrote. "We've not seen the last of this serious public servant."

Retired neurosurgeon and GOP presidential candidate Ben Carson echoed Perry's compliments.

"Thank you to @BobbyJindal for being a conservative governor and running a campaign he should be proud of," Carson wrote.
"Wishing the Jindal family well."

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