Louisiana governor Bobby Jindal is pushing back against Republicans who’ve called for the impeachment of President Obama in recent weeks.
“I reject that kind of talk,” Jindal said on Sunday’s Meet the Press. ”The reality is I didn’t like it when the left spent eight years trying to de-legitimize President Bush, calling to question his election.”
“I don’t think we should be doing that to President Obama,” he continued. “The reality is, one of the great things about this country is we do have a peaceful transfer of power. I disagree with this president’s policy. And stop talking about impeachment. Let’s go out there and let’s have a legitimate debate. Let’s fight his policies. Let’s try to repeal Obamacare. Let’s try to promote school choice.”
Jindal’s message contrasts sharply with what we’ve heard from most other Republicans in recent weeks. While referring to the president as a “friend,” Sen. Tom Coburn of Oklahoma said last week at a town hall event that Obama is “perilously close” to impeachment.
“I think those are serious things, but we’re in serious times,” Coburn said. “I don’t have the legal background to know if that rises to ‘high crimes and misdemeanors,’ but I think you’re getting perilously close.”
On Friday’s Jansing & Co, former White House senior advisor David Axelrod called Coburn’s comments “absurd.”
Before Coburn’s comments, Rep. Kerry Bentivolio, a Michigan Republican, said it would be a “dream come true” to file the articles of impeachment against Obama.
Other Republicans, including Sen. Ted Cruz and Rep. Blake Farenthold, have carefully tried to tamp down impeachment talk, arguing that it would be a political impossibility, though not necessarily a bad idea in principle. Jindal’s comments may make him the most prominent Republican to unequivocally reject the idea.
Sen. Mike Lee made somewhat similar comments to Utah County Republicans over the weekend, according to the Salt Lake Tribune, saying that there’s no evidence the president has committed Obama has committed the “high crimes and misdemeanors” required for impeachment.
Jindal’s remarks came the same day he penned an opinion piece for Politico titled “The End of Race,” in which he argued that “while racism still rears its ugly head from time to time, America has made significant progress in the half century since Dr. King’s incredible speech.”
“Yet we still place far too much emphasis on our “separateness,” our heritage, ethnic background, skin color, etc.,” Jindal, an Indian-American, added. “We live in the age of hyphenated Americans: Asian-Americans, Italian-Americans, African-Americans, Mexican-Americans, Cuban-Americans, Indian-Americans, and Native Americans, to name just a few.”
Jindal also addressed his own party’s struggles to win over minority voters.
“When I became chairman of the Republican Governors’ Association last year, I gave this advice to the Republican Party: If you want people to like you, a good place to start is to demonstrate that you like them,” he wrote.