Scott Jordan

Add NYT's Kristol to the Jindal-for-VP boosters

The Gov. Jindal-as-VP-pick chatter just won’t go away, and now it’s gotten a high-profile boost in the New York Times. Conservative columnist William Kristol used his NYT column yesterday to push the idea, coming straight out of the gate with a “McCain-Jindal?” headline. After Kristol notes early polls showing Republican presidential nominee John McCain trailing if Democratic U.S. Sen. Barack Obama is the Democratic nominee, Kristol offers his solution:

... in separate conversations last week, no fewer than four McCain staffers and advisers mentioned as a possible vice-presidential pick the 36-year-old Louisiana governor, Bobby Jindal. They’re tempted by the idea of picking someone so young, with real accomplishments and a strong reformist streak.

It might also be a way to confront the issue of McCain’s age (71), which private polls and focus groups suggest could be a real problem. A Jindal pick would implicitly acknowledge the questions and raise the ante. The message would be: “You want generational change? You can get it with McCain-Jindal — without risking a liberal and inexperienced Obama as commander in chief.” I would add that it was after McCain spent considerable time with Jindal in New Orleans recently, and reportedly found him, as he has before, personally engaging and intellectually impressive, that the campaign’s informal name-dropping of Jindal began.

Washington Post media critic Howard Kurtz wonders what Kristol’s smoking : “I was surprised to see Bill Kristol citing four McCain aides as floating Bobby Jindal for veep,” writes Kurtz.  “... A 36-year-old who spent three years in the House and a few months as governor? Jindal says it’s unlikely, and he’s right.”