CONCORD MONITOR: Jindal: Obama ‘is living in a bubble’
As originally appearing in The Concord Monitor


Monitor staff


Just hours before taking a New Hampshire stage as a presidential contender, Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal was handed a political target he couldn’t miss: the Supreme Court’s decision upholding portions of the Affordable Care Act.

“Today the president said Obamacare is working even better than he expected it to,” Jindal said. “He is living in a bubble inside the White House in a dream world.”

Jindal, who officially announced his candidacy in his home state of Louisiana a day before, highlighted his plan to replace the Affordable Care Act, during his time at Politics & Eggs on Thursday, a political series by the New Hampshire Institute of Politics at Saint Anselm College.

“The court has spoken, now it’s time for the people to speak,” he said. “The people made it very clear they don’t want Obamacare. . . . The reason it’s so unpopular is it hasn’t done what he said it was going to do.”

Instead of the Affordable Care Act, Jindal – who has said that he is the only candidate with a detailed replacement for the plan – said he would replace it with “a plan that is based on choice, on competition, on empowering patients.”

Jindal discussed his campaign priorities, and criticized both Republican and Democrat opponents. He reiterated many of the same messages from his announcement Wednesday, touching upon his family’s history and belief in the American dream, his plan to be a “doer” rather than a talker.

“We intend to spend a lot of time here,” said Jindal, whose wife, Supriya, was at the Manchester event with him Thursday.

The Republican Louisiana governor, who is the 13th GOP candidate to officially enter the race, criticized one of his competitors, Jeb Bush, for saying that the party needs to appeal to the left and to the media.

“We’ve tried that, and we’ve done that. We’ve lost and we deserved to lose,” Jindal said. “I’ve got a novel idea: Why don’t we run in an election where we actually embrace our ideas and our principles?”

Jindal posited that he is a real alternative for voters, saying that his campaign is more than just that, but is a cause or a movement.

“I don’t really have permission from Washington to run, but I think voters are saying we don’t want the smart people in D.C. to clear the field to anoint our candidate,” he said.

A poll released this week showed Bush and Donald Trump as the two candidates with the most support from likely New Hampshire primary voters. The poll considered 19 candidates either officially or unofficially declared. Jindal polled at 16 out 19, with less than 1 percent support from potential voters.

In addition to criticizing President Obama’s Affordable Care Act, Jindal commented on what he said was division of Americans by the president.

“I’m tired of hyphenated Americans. . . . I say no more Indian-Americans. No more African-Americans, no more Irish-Americans, no more rich Americans, no more poor Americans. We’re all Americans,” said Jindal, whose parents are from India.

Jindal also linked this idea of division to former secretary of state and Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton. A Clinton presidency, he said, would be like a third term for President Obama.

“President Obama will not be on the ballot. Now his policies will be on the ballot, with Secretary Clinton running,” he said.

Jindal has already visited New Hampshire several times and he was one of nearly 20 candidates who participated in the FITN Republican Leadership Summit in Nashua in April.

He will next be in New Hampshire on July 5 for a Republican Party Independence Day Celebration at Bear Brook State Park in Allenstown.

(Susan Doucet can be reached at 369-3309, or on Twitter @susan_doucet.)

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