Gov. Bobby Jindal on Thursday will tackle Donald Trump “as a unserious carnival act,” a top aide told reporters, in a speech his campaign says will be “very hot.”
“He’s going to say that he agrees with Trump’s assertion that the professional political generation is full of crap – he may not use the word crap, I don’t know,” aide Curt Anderson said in call with reporters on Wednesday. But, “he will say that Trump’s remedy is not conservative change, it’s simply Donald Trump.”
The Republican governor of Louisiana has been running for president since May, but he’s barely budged in national polls. He’s campaigning heavily in Iowa, but in the two most recent polls of likely Republican voters there, he’s still in single digits. In the NBC News/Marist poll released this week, he tied with Sens. Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio at 4%. In a recent Monmouth University poll, he scored just 1%, but campaign manager Timmy Teepell said they believe that "the race is wide open, nobody has any real votes."
The campaign admits this is all about headlines: “Everything you do in a presidential campaign is an attempt to grab headlines,” Anderson continued. Still, the campaign argued Trump needed to be taken down so the party could elect a better candidate.
Jindal won’t be the first candidate to attack Trump: Gov. Rick Perry, Sen. Rand Paul, and Jeb Bush have all targeted him on the campaign trail and in debates, but none have managed to dominate him in the polls.
"Probably what a lot of ya’ll are thinking is that, yes a lot of other people have tried [to attack Trump]," Teepell told reporters. He and Anderson argued that Jindal's attacks will be different because they'll target him personally, instead of specific policies, and because he doesn't intend to back down after initial sparring as others have.
"You don't win two statewide elections in Louisiana without brawling. Tomorrow, you're going to see the brawler," he said Wednesday.
Jindal will address the National Press Club on Thursday morning.