November 15th, 2012
07:11 PM ET
2 years ago

Jindal says Romney 'gift' remark 'completely unhelpful'

(CNN) – Gov. Bobby Jindal – the newly elected chair of the Republican Governors Association and a frequent subject of 2016 presidential speculation – reiterated Thursday his irritation at Mitt Romney's comments explaining his defeat in the presidential election.

Romney was recorded telling donors on a conference call that President Barack Obama won votes by offering "gifts" to African-Americans, Hispanics and young voters.

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"This is completely unhelpful," Jindal told CNN's Wolf Blitzer on "The Situation Room." "This is not where the Republican Party needs to go. If you want voters to like you, the first thing you've got to do is like them first."

The Louisiana governor's comments were similar to remarks he made Wednesday in Las Vegas, where he and other governors are attending a meeting of the Republican Governors Association.

During his CNN interview on Thursday, Jindal linked the latest Romney comments to the candidate's remarks at a closed door fund-raiser in May, when he argued that 47 % of Americans were "victims" dependent on government and would never vote for him.

"I don't think we advance this discussion or debate by insulting folks," Jindal said. "Look, the Republicans need to stick to our principles, but we need to treat other people with respect. Even those we don't agree with, we need to show them we respect them and their beliefs. We can disagree without being disagreeable. Republicans said a lot of dumb things. We need to condemn the remarks."

Among those dumb things, Jindal said, were comments from GOP Senate candidates in Indiana and Missouri about rape and abortion, which drew consternation from Democrats and Republicans. Both candidates lost their bids by wide margins in races that were previously close.

Ultimately, the 2012 presidential race is in the history books, and Jindal said he wasn't sure "how much benefit there is to continue to look back."

Sen. Marco Rubio from Florida offered more restrained opposition to Romney's remarks than Jindal. In an interview with Politico on Thursday, Rubio characterized them as "an analysis to donors."

Rubio, another former Romney surrogate with possible 2016 presidential aspirations, said he was unaware of the full context of Romney's remarks, so he could not say whether he was disappointed by them. However, his party's mission, he added, "should not be to deny government benefits to people who need them," and instead make sure "less people need government benefits."

"I don't want to rebut him point by point," he said of the former Republican presidential candidate.

"I would just say to you, I don't believe that we have millions and millions of people in this country that don't want to work. I'm not saying that's what he said. I think we have millions of people in this country that are out of work and are dependent on the government because they can't find a job."


Filed under: Bobby Jindal • Mitt Romney
soundoff (62 Responses)
  1. The Cards

    The Republican extremists played the racism, classism, and crony cards, but awoke to the sobering reality that the American public was not to be fooled by the theatrics and twisted tactics. Here's the answer to their dilemma, President Obama and Democrats genuinely care about 100% of the US population, and frankly Republicans seem to have an "every man for himself "approach.

    I guess Romney is really angry that President Obama won! And btw the real conversation should be how the President won, not how Romney lost. This election was not Romney's too lose.

    Here is some root cause analysis for the Republicans. Seek out those in the Republican Party that for the past six years have stirred up the racism, classism, and crony cards. You will need to disassociate the party from those individuals.

    November 16, 2012 02:37 am at 2:37 am |
  2. Tom Bl

    They nominated Romney. Romney is theirs. They probably could have done even worse.

    November 16, 2012 05:14 am at 5:14 am |
  3. Don

    Bre careful Bobby,.rational thought is not one of your parties strengths any more.

    November 16, 2012 06:12 am at 6:12 am |
  4. MarieMD

    Oh please Mr. Mardi Gras. Where were you and all those other rethugs who are now coming out of the woodwork loike roaches against he twit?
    Right, he lost bad so NOW everyone thinks his ideas as stupid. Why didn't any of you stand up to him and mcnasty in 2008, for that matter, when the hatred and division really started with the mutant from AK?
    Are votes and winning an election more important than your ethics, morals and character. Never mind, don'[t answer we already know the rethugs don't have any ofthe above.
    BTW – a LOT of white people voted for the President. I still have to see those gifts the twit is talking about.

    November 16, 2012 06:24 am at 6:24 am |
  5. bassman

    The "gifts" Romney was talking about is just another word for pander. That is what Pres.Obama did with his base. He pandered to woman, the LGBT community and college students.

    November 16, 2012 06:30 am at 6:30 am |
  6. the situation

    I'm so glad this phony was never elected President last week. Romney is just a complete phony. He never cared about the middle class and American's that have suffered and is lost, he only cared about his rich buddies to give them any and all breaks to make them more richer.

    This man, Romney, just oozes of arrogance. Both him and his wife are just a like. This man, since summer believed he was already President. He went to the Olympics, for what reason, when the Government was being represented by Michelle Obama and her delegation and he goes over there like it was a state visit.

    Romney not just comes off as a whining loser, but a two bit racist. To say African American, Hispanics voters only wanted free stuff and was why he didn't win is very insulting. They just didn't agree with him because he is a notorious flip flopper that doesn't get it. Explain why that both Romney and Ryan not just lost their home states by a huge difference but lost in their home towns.

    Simply Romney is a clown and thank god this man will never be President.

    November 16, 2012 07:05 am at 7:05 am |
  7. the situation

    Also, say what you want about George W. Bush. He might be an idiot and the worst president, but even the common man understood Bush and he was able to connect to them. Romney is a wine and cheese guy, that both he and his wife stick their noses at the middle class.

    November 16, 2012 07:07 am at 7:07 am |
  8. Bevis

    Yeah... Blame the "poor" people that need govt assistance because you laid them off to save an extra buck. When my business is going great I have to save money for when its not so I can keep up normal operation, you should try that.

    November 16, 2012 07:15 am at 7:15 am |
  9. Dave

    I find it interesting how the GOP loves to paint the Democrats as a party who blames everyone else. Yet, the GOP can never take any responsibility for anything. Romney's loss wasn't about gifts. His loss was about the fact that the he was a poor candidate who can't relate to and doen't care about half the country. Not to mention the fact that the GOP's policy positions are flat-out wrong and they pander to bigots and those can't spell their own names without cue cards. Simple as that.

    November 16, 2012 07:17 am at 7:17 am |
  10. Ed1

    The truth sometimes hurt Obama started the class warfare and he won the election by doing so.

    November 16, 2012 07:20 am at 7:20 am |
  11. Gregory M. Newbold

    The GOP will need more than a brown-skinned face to convince women, latinos, blacks, asians, gays, and thinking white men that they are not hostile to members of a multicultural, multi=ethnic America. The GOP "should be about it, not talk about it".

    The Democrats have spent years building their "street cred". With Latinos for example, the Democrats were showing moral, ethical & political support long before nominating Sotomayer or Mr. Obama`s executive order on "DreamKids".

    People have observed the disrespect that the GOP ranks [from Jindal/Romney/Limbaugh/Colter/Hannity/Palin/Liz Cheney/ Akin/Murdoch/Joe Wilson/McConnell/ OTHERS] have thrust upon OUR President; a black American. Until the GOP treats him with the same deference & respect paid to Reagan or Daddy Bush, hoards of voters won`t even listen to their message.

    November 16, 2012 07:40 am at 7:40 am |
  12. AlSonny

    Romney's gift comment invalidated his ability to preside us.

    November 16, 2012 07:55 am at 7:55 am |
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