Bobby Jindal Remains Grover Norquist’s Puppet Governor Despite Louisiana Budget Mess

Despite Louisiana facing a 1.6 billion dollar budget hole, Governor Bobby Jindal (R) is still trying to honor his “no tax pledge” to anti-tax crusader Grover Norquist. To avoid raising taxes, Jindal is trying to push for crippling cuts to higher education and social programs.

Governor Jindal’s dogmatic refusal to find ways to raise revenue has made him incredibly unpopular with Louisiana voters. His stubbornness has also created conflict with state GOP lawmakers who recognize the severity of the state’s budget mess and are now arguing that raising taxes has become necessary for Louisiana’s fiscal survival.

Eleven Republican lawmakers wrote a desperate letter pleading with Grover Norquist to rethink his “no tax” position, and to give the legislature credit for the tax cuts they have already implemented over the past seven years. Norquist, predictably was unmoved and made no attempt to alter his fundamentalist anti-tax position. The fact that Republican state lawmakers in Louisiana feel that they have to beg for Norquist’s permission as they consider legislation is troubling in its own right, but Jindal is so thoroughly bought that he doesn’t even question Norquist’s decrees.

Jindal is paying no heed to lawmakers or to Louisiana residents because he apparently has his eyes set on running for President. He would rather say he never raised taxes during a presidential debate, than find a way to fix the fiscal disaster he has created in Louisiana. He is willing to burn bridges in his home state as long as he can ingratiate himself to Grover Norquist, the Washington DC-based president of Americans for Tax Reform.

Like so many other ambitious Republican politicians, Jindal has accepted the Norquist “no tax pledge” as an article of faith. He is happy to take his marching orders from Norquist because GOP politicians who wear Norquist’s anti-tax seal of approval, seem to think they are bullet-proof in election contests. In Republican circles, opposing tax increases is worn as a badge of honor, no matter how much damage the ideology actually causes in the states where it is applied.

Bobby Jindal has become so steadfastly loyal to Norquist, that he has forgotten who he works for. Jindal’s job is to represent the people of Louisiana, but the puppet governor apparently believes he works for Grover Norquist in Washington D.C. As Jindal contemplates a run for the presidency, he may soon discover that voters are looking for a leader and not a puppet.

Bobby Jindal is content to let the man who wants to shrink the federal government to the size it can be drowned in a bathtub, pull his strings. Dancing to his master, Jindal is already watching Louisiana drown. However, there is no reason American voters should let Grover Norquist’s puppet governor flood the rest of the country with his fiscal irresponsibility as well.

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