Former Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal has come up with an interesting rationale for the rise of GOP frontrunner Donald Trump in the 2016 presidential elections.
Jindal, who dropped his own bid for the presidency back in November after failing to gain any traction in the polls, believes that outgoing President Obama's lack of drama is the reason why voters are so intrigued by the demagogue that is the billionaire businessman.
He wrote in The Wall Street Journal on Thursday:
But the president truly doesn’t get enough credit for creating one of the most polarizing forces in American politics today.
No, not Hillary—that is more Bill’s doing. Let’s be honest: There would be no Donald Trump, dominating the political scene today if it were not for President Obama.
The two-term governor then went on to explain how in past election cycles, voters have tended to choose a candidate that is the exact opposite personality-wise from their predecessor. He coined this phenomena “[correcting] for the perceived deficiencies of the incumbent.”
Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush
After eight years of President Reagan’s supply-side economics and broadsides against welfare queens, we got a kinder, gentler President H.W. Bush.
George H.W. Bush and Bill Clinton
After four years of international diplomacy without the “vision thing,” we got a loquacious Arkansas governor promising to invent a third way forward focused on the economy at home.
Bill Clinton and George W. Bush
After eight years of Clintonian empathy and skirt-chasing, we got a plain-spoken President George W. Bush, who promised to restore integrity to the Oval Office.
George W. Bush and Barack Obama
After Hurricane Katrina and post-Hussein Iraq, we got the professorial President Barack Obama, who seemed to many to promise competence.
So what did the former Louisiana governor pen about Obama's “no drama” personality? That it resulted in voters this year:
“...looking for a strong leader who speaks in short, declarative sentences.”
Even Trump would be hesitant to deny his penchant for speaking plainly. After all, here is just a quick sampling of the many, many remarks the 2016 GOP presidential candidate has said while on the campaign trail:
Jindal, who has since endorsed the more soft-spoken, policy-focused senator from the Sunshine State, Marco Rubio, isn't alone in thinking this way, either.
The New York Times' Ross Douthat wrote back in December:
Trumpism is also a creature of the late Obama era, irrupting after eight years when a charismatic liberal president has dominated the cultural landscape and set the agenda for national debates.
President Obama didn’t give us Trump in any kind of Machiavellian or deliberate fashion. But it isn’t an accident that this is the way the Obama era ends — with a reality TV demagogue leading a populist, nationalist revolt.
As did the WSJ's own editorial board (also in December), writing:
Every thesis creates its antithesis, a famous philosopher once said, and so it is now in American politics.
President Obama’s insistent failure to confront the realities of global jihad has produced its opposite in Donald Trump’s unfiltered nationalist id.
This is a reminder of how much damage a misguided American President can do to the country’s political culture.
Nonetheless, the American people still believe Trump is the best Republican to “Make America Great Again,” as the GOP frontrunner holds sizeable leads in several of the states set to vote on Saturday, including Jindal's very own Louisiana.