BATON ROUGE, La.-Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal announced on Monday that he’s creating an exploratory committee to “test the waters” as he is considering running for president as a Republican in 2016. Jindal has long been considering running for president ever since Mitt Romney lost the White House in 2012 to President Obama. Jindal, 43, is a youthful conservative-but very experienced and vetted; he was on the vice presidential shortlist for John McCain in 2008 and Mitt Romney in 2012; but didn’t make the final three probably due to the fact that he was geographically unhelpful. Louisiana brings a whopping 8 electoral votes, and Louisiana is not a swing state like it was in the 2000 or 2004 elections. Jindal is a staunch social conservative, and if he does officially run, he would give former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, former 2012 presidential candidate Rick Santorum, former Texas Gov. Rick Perry (his strong friend and a man he endorsed for president in 2012), problems in Iowa.
Iowa is a crucial state for social conservatives. The Iowa Straw Poll will be crucial for Jindal’s hopes; if he doesn’t place within fourth place; he may have to drop out of the race due to the fact that the media hypes the straw poll every four years on a Saturday summer day in a classic Midwestern state of Iowa. But, former Minnesota Rep. Michele Bachmann won the Iowa straw poll over more established, safer choices such as former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty (who dropped out and regretted that he could have won), and Bachmann’s campaign imploded and she had to drop out in January 2012 after doing horribly in the Iowa caucuses.
Jindal is unpopular in his own state. He is more unpopular than Barack Obama. Jindal, a once rising star, is struggling to be relevant. He is term-limited, and has NO interest in running for the 2016 Senate seat that will likely be vacant by David Vitter, the senator that will be running for governor and is likely to win it all due to Louisiana’s conservative swing. Jindal will be an added alternative to a Jeb Bush or a Marco Rubio should they falter, but seeing Bobby Jindal win the presidency, when he is still unknown by the vast majority of the public (even though he gave the 2009 State of the Union Republican Response to new President Obama that went horribly bad), is very unlikely at this point unless he dramatically changes his message with the polling numbers in Iowa, South Carolina, the states that he needs to win the most.