Blasts administration at bipartisan governorsâ€™ meet.
By Deepak Chitnis
WASHINGTON, DC: Never one to shy away from speaking his mind, Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal openly defied political decorum when he launched into a tirade against President Barack Obama after a meeting of the National Governors Association (NGA) at the White House.
Governors from across the 50 states met with Obama on Monday to discuss policy issues and other political topics, and while the discussions were supposedly very polite and respectful, all pretenses of nicety flew right out the door when Jindal, a Republican, stepped up to the microphone to address the press.
Jindal called out the President for turning American into a â€œminimum-wage economy,â€ saying that the Obama administration is â€œwaving the white flagâ€ after five years in office rather than actively taking a stand to bring America out of the financial doldrums that have plagued the country since the recession hit in 2008. Furthermore, Jindal didnâ€™t miss the chance to take a swing at the Affordable Care Act, saying that the Obamacare mandates are holding back the economy rather than helping.
In response to his remarks, Democrat Governor Dan Malloy of Connecticut called Jindalâ€™s remarked â€œthe most insane statement [heâ€™s] ever heard,â€ subtly criticizing Jindal for what he felt was a move to steer the conversation away from cooperative negotiation and back towards the partisan hostility that has plagued Washington for the past few years.
â€œUntil a few moments ago, we were going down a pretty cooperative road,â€ said Malloy immediately following Jindalâ€™s statements. â€œLetâ€™s be clear that we had a really great meeting, and we [Democrats] did not go down that road. It just started again and we didnâ€™t start it.â€
The NGA met for talks over the weekend and with the President on Monday, and Malloy was keen to point out that many who were present support raising the minimum, implying that the initiative has support from both sides of the aisle. Republicans have traditionally been against such a move, with the argument being that raising the minimum wage could lead to higher unemployment as people get laid off.
Jindalâ€™s fervent outspokenness could either be seen as a battle cry to get his fellows in the GOP back in line, or to show his unwillingness to budge on Conservative principles as he readies himself for a potential 2016 White House run. The Governor has always shied away from declaring his ambitions to run, but he was named as a likely running mate to Mitt Romney and John McCain in the previous two elections, and could very well be in line for the same spot in three years.
The news of political bickering between Republicans and Democrats comes on the heels of news that Obama met with House Speaker John Boehner for a private chat in the Oval Office, the first time the two party leaders met face-to-face since late 2012. The two parties have been at each otherâ€™s throats almost non-stop for the better part of a year, fighting endlessly on issues from the debt ceiling to immigration reform.
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