This morning on radio, Governor Bobby Jindal of Louisiana called into the radio show to discuss a big announcement he has coming up this Wednesday. Is Governor Bobby Jindal possibly running for president in 2016?
Glenn immediately started off the interview complimenting Jindal, but also asking him some difficult questions, such as, “What makes you different than Ted Cruz, and Rand Paul, and Scott Walker?”
Listen to Jindal’s answer below and hear more of what he had to say the government's involvement in marriage and the current crisis with ISIS.
Below is a rush transcript of this segment, it may contain errors:
GLENN: Bobby Jindal, one of our -- really truly one of our favorite guys. I hate to say politicians. Because I don't like any politicians. But I like Bobby Jindal. He's a very smart, very gracious, God-fearing man, who is -- who has really changed Louisiana for the better and done a lot of things in Louisiana to help Louisiana out, without raising in taxes whatsoever. We welcome him now to the program.
Governor Jindal, how are you, sir?
BOBBY: Glenn, it is such a privilege to be on the air with you. And, look, I wish I had time to return all those wonderful compliments. Thank you for what you said.
The last time you and I were together was I believe with Steve Green. If you remember, he was doing his fundraiser for his Bible museum. I couldn't agree with you more on your opening comments. Now more than ever, we need to have faith. I was actually in South Carolina recently calling for a spiritual revival with many pastors and folks there. So it's so great to be back on the air with you, and it's great to be talking with you again.
GLENN: So, Bobby, are you announcing on Wednesday that you and your wife are happy and you'll stay together?
PAT: Or that you'll keep being the governor of Louisiana?
GLENN: Or is there something else that maybe you might be --
BOBBY: Glenn, I'm always waiting for that -- to do a listening tour and say, the people told me to stay at home.
GLENN: Please tell me you're not going on a listening tour.
BOBBY: No. On the 24th, we'll make our final decision. And, look, this is what I believe, I think we need dramatic changes in the direction of our country, not minor tweaks.
I think President Obama, Secretary Clinton, they're trying to redefine the American dream. It's something called the European nightmare. That dream has always been about freedom and opportunity. They're trying to redefine it to redistribution and government dependence. If I become a candidate, it won't be to sugarcoat anything. We can own the future. Our best days can be ahead of us, or we can recede and decline as we're doing right now. Success isn't inevitable. This isn't an exercise. Every politician says the next election is the most important one. This one really, really is. We can't afford four more years on this path.
GLENN: So, Bobby, you're probably one of our or five that I have real confidence in. In my lifetime, I've never seen a group of politicians from any walk that I have more confidence in than the Republican field. I mean, there is the Donald Trumps of the world, and, quite frankly, and I'm not going to put you in a corner here on Jeb Bush, but there's some people here who are just the same old, same old, or crazy. And then there are a few that are really, really good. Ted Cruz is really good. Rand Paul, I think, is really good. I think Governor Walker could be really good. Marco Rubio is worth consideration.
PAT: And should you decide somehow to potentially run, you'd be great as well.
GLENN: Yeah. So now, how do you differentiate yourself? I mean, I just want to go through those people. Because our audience has selected -- we ask them every month to rate all of these politicians, A through F. So the top five are Ted Cruz, Rand Paul, who else?
STU: Bobby Jindal is up there for sure.
PAT: Scott Walker.
GLENN: Scott Walker. And there's one other. So let's start with those guys. What makes you different than Ted Cruz and Rand Paul and Scott Walker?
BOBBY: First of all, that's a great question. I would say, it's not enough just to send any Republican -- you're right. We need to sort through the field. They told us, we give them a majority in the Senate, they would repeal this illegal amnesty. They would repeal Obamacare. They would shrink the size of the government. They haven't done that. We need somebody who is not going to play by the Washington rules.
In terms of the list, one, I'm biased towards governors. We have now a first-term senator in office. We can't afford more on-the-job training. We don't need a talker. We need a doer. So I'm biased towards governors.
I think the two things that set me apart as a successful governor is number one, many candidates are talking about repealing Obamacare. We're the only potential candidate with specific plans. How do you get rid of Obamacare, all of the spending, all of the taxes, not just some of it? We're the only one with a plan on energy independence, on education reform, on rebuilding our defense.
So we're not just talking about platitudes. We have detailed plans.
Then secondly, when you look at what we've done back home, we've cut our budget 26%. Over 30,000 fewer state and government bureaucrats. No, that's not a mistake. I'm not talking about slowing the growth of government. We've reduced the size of government. That's what we need in D.C. $18 trillion of debt and growing. And there's no end in sight. We don't need to rearrange the chairs on the debt. We need to make serious changes in D.C. I've done that in Louisiana. In doing that, our private sector economy has done very well. We're in the top ten states for job creation. More people working in Louisiana than ever before, earning a higher income than ever before. We need that kind of drastic change in D.C. as well.
GLENN: Bobby, how are you going to deal with -- I mean, quite honestly, the biggest enemy of the Constitution is not the Democrats or the liberals. It is the progressives. And we have progressives on both sides of the aisle. Right now, I got up this morning, and I saw another news story again about how the Republicans are going to save Obamacare.
How do you stop the -- the -- the progressives in your own party?
BOBBY: Well, first of all, you're exactly right. You have Republicans bending over backwards. They said, once Obamacare is now the law, now that it's passed, we can no longer ever shrink it. We can't get rid of an entitlement program. If that's true, we're done as a party. There's no need for a Republican Party. We've said, once the progressives [inaudible] out of dependence, we can never cut it back, there's no point in having two political parties. We need a conservative movement. And it's not just Obamacare.
I'm against giving this president fast-track authority. Talk about a president that already breaks the Constitution. Doesn't follow the law. We have Republicans bending over backwards to give him even more authority. Here's where I think the real breakdown is. The Republican Party has rightfully not been the party of big government. That's good.
Unfortunately there are some that want to make the Republican Party the party of big business, and that's bad. Big business has given us amnesty, Common Core. Big business, some of them are lobbying against repealing Obamacare. They say you can't do it. No, if you listen to conventional wisdom in D.C., they'll tell you you can't shrink the budget, you can't have term limits, you shouldn't say radical Islamic terrorism, you shouldn't say things that are spiritual, that's politically incorrect. That's nonsense. People in the real world, out there in America, they want term limits, they want a balanced budget, they want to get rid of Common Core. They don't want big government in bed with big business. I think a great example of this, progressives in the Republican Party, as you mentioned, look at the fight in Indiana over religious liberty. Again, this unholy alliance between big business and the radical left going after religious liberty and conservatives. Look, the radical left wants to tax and regulate businesses out of existence. They think profit is a dirty word. So these businesses need to be careful who they're making these alliances with.
GLENN: Let me ask you. Because you're talking now about the religious. There is a -- there is the possibility of -- of us completely changing the idea behind the First Amendment of us living in a world of really not having a right of conscience anymore.
What do we do there, Bobby?
BOBBY: First of all --
GLENN: I believe that -- I believe that if you're gay, and you want to get married. You can get married. Because I don't believe -- I mean, the marriage institution, the paperwork for it for the government was really started to keep blacks from marrying whites. So we didn't have this. It was all done through our churches and everything. So government shouldn't get into the marriage deal. With that being said, no one should be able to tell my church that my church has to live a certain way or marry people. Whatever. You stay out of my life. I stay out of your life. That's not happening.
BOBBY: Not at all. I don't want to see the definition of marriage change. But you're right. This is bigger than marriage. And now you have bakers, musicians, caterers, being charged thousands of dollars in fines, being forced to choose, do you want to operate a business, or do you want to follow your conscience? That's not what the First Amendment intended. That's not what the Founding Fathers intended.
America didn't create religious liberty. Religious liberty created the United States of America. And the left is trying to take God out of the public sphere and public square. I gave a talk about this at the Reagan Library over a year ago. I'm glad that we passed good laws in Louisiana. Going back to my first term for religious freedom restoration. We did an executive order this year to stop the state from doing exactly what you said, discriminating against sanctioning, going against businesses or individuals who simply want to live by their conscience.
My hope is that even those that are secular, even those that may not be Christian, may not share your or my views on marriage would respect our right to live our lives. The danger is, Hillary Clinton, President Obama, when they say freedom of religious expression, all they mean is you can say what you want in your church. Glenn, that's not religious freedom. Religious freedom is being able to live your life 24 hours a day, seven days a week, according to our sincerely held religious beliefs, according to our conscience, according to our morals. That's what is at stake here. This is a very, very important fight. The left has gotten more radicalized on this.
My hope is that even those that aren't religious or Christian or don't share our traditional views would still fight for our right to be able to have those views and live according to those views in America.
PAT: Governor, I would guess that we probably line up pretty closely on almost every domestic issue. But the Middle East is in such disarray right now. ISIS is making incredible inroads. They've taken over huge swaths of territory.
How would you handle that? How would you handle foreign policy especially when it comes to ISIS in the Middle East? Are you -- would you favor military intervention again or staying out of that mess? Where are you on that?
BOBBY: Well, there are several things that the president could and should be do right now.
First of all, leading from behind hasn't worked. Secondly, we have to name our enemies. Radical Islamic terrorists. It's not the crusades, it's not the evil Christians. It's not even trans fat. The most important enemy in front of us right now is radical Islamic Muslims.
I said yesterday, look, I'll protect my kids from Oreo cookies or microwave popcorn if the president will protect us from radical Islamic terrorists.
When you look at ISIS in particular -- let's arm, let's train, let's work with the Kurds. They've been successful on the ground. And Kobani, again in Syria this past week, when combined with allied airstrikes, they've been very successful at repelling ISIS' ground troops. Secondly, I think there are Sunni allies are willing to do more in this fight if they thought America was committed to victory.
Part of the problem is that the president drew this red line in the sand. There are no consequences. Assad (phonetic) is still in power. So many of our allies fear, if they fought ISIS, they would strengthen Assad and Iran indirectly. So we need to show our Sunni allies that we're committed to victory. I think they would be more willing to commit more to this struggle and fight.
Third, I think the president made a fundamental mistake in setting the authorization and use of military force to Congress with two restrictions on it. The ban on ground troops. The three-year deadline.
Not because I'm advocating -- I don't think anyone is advocating for a surge of ground troops right now. But rather, no commander-in-chief should ever telegraph to the enemy that this is what we're not going to do. Here's our time line. I think he needs to take the political handcuffs off. Go to the Pentagon and say, give me a plan. He now twice has admitted he has no plan. Every time he does this, it's hilarious -- not hilarious, but, you know, the spokespeople come out and say the president didn't mean what he said. It's not a verbal gaffe. He really doesn't have a strategy here.
Instead we're sending a few hundred more trainers over there. No coherent strategy. No commander-in-chief should send American troops in harm's way without the resources, the support, as well as a strategy they need for victory. This president is not doing that. And look, this fight will not stay over there. As you saw with the attack in Garland, Texas. This is an enemy that we can face here at home. That's why -- he has to name the enemy for what it is. We have to fight this enemy culturally as well. This president needs to say to Muslim leaders, look, Islam has a problem. It's called radical Islam, and clerics need to denounce terrorists by name and say -- not just condemning generic acts of violence, condemn those individuals so they're not martyrs going to enjoy a reward in the afterlife. Making it clear we're fighting this enemy on all fronts.
STU: You mentioned Oreos, Bobby. Would you consider an executive order to make sure red velvet Oreos stay on the market and are not limited edition?
BOBBY: I've never actually had a red velvet Oreo. But it sounds like it would be a good thing. Look, you can eat kale 24 hours a day. Three meals a day and live to 100 years old. I'm not going to do that.
PAT: Thank you. Thank you.
GLENN: Thank you. I'm glad to hear that. Bobby, Governor, it's always great to have you. And we wish you all the best of luck. And I'd like to -- if you don't mind, I'd like to ask you and pin you down on this on the air, I'd like to spend maybe an hour or two with you with a camera. I'll fly to wherever you are. And we'll sit down one-on-one. I want to put together the five candidates that I would really consider and ask them all the same questions and let people hear them all answer the same questions and no gotcha or anything else. Would you be willing to participate in that?
BOBBY: I would love to do that. I'm honored to be on your list of five. That means a lot to me. You and I go way back. I have a lot of respect for you.
PAT: If someone wanted to help out if you had any announcement to make that was out of the ordinary on Wednesday --
GLENN: You mean like join a campaign.
PAT: Yeah, or contribute to it or whatever. Where would you go to do that? There's probably nowhere to go. Right?
BOBBY: It's funny you should ask that. There is a site. You can go to BobbyJindal.com. It's very simple. B-O-B-B-Y J-I-N-D-A-L.com. We'd love for folks to come down. It's in the greater New Orleans area. June 24th for our announcement. They can find out more about what we're doing, as well as those detailed policy plans I mentioned as well.
GLENN: Why would you have that website if you're just going to announce how happy you and your wife are? I don't understand that. Thank you very much, Bobby. I appreciate it.
BOBBY: Thanks. Y'all have a great day.
GLENN: You too.
PAT: He's great.
GLENN: He's a contender.
PAT: Oh, he's a contender. He's good.