(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."