Poll results show Jindal faces tough presidential competition - FOX 8 WVUE New Orleans News, Weather, Sports

Poll results show Jindal faces tough presidential competition


NEW ORLEANS, LA (WVUE) - He threw out every piece of red meat, calling Barak Obama the worst president in his lifetime. But political analysts say Bobby Jindal's audience at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) just didn't bite.

The annual meeting of conservatives brought out some of the biggest names in the Republican party.

The governor finished 10th in the CPAC's straw poll - far behind the winner, Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky.

"Jindal does not have the consistent profile that the others have that you notice scored much higher and have a higher percentage of the votes," says Silas Lee, a pollster and social strategist. "Even though he's been trying to enhance his bonafide credentials, it's been very difficult in a very competitive field of conservatives."

Lee says the results aren't surprising. He says Jindal paints himself as ultra-conservative on many social issues, while Republicans like Paul - with higher national profiles - are more moderate.

"He doesn't know when to throttle it back and often he swings at the wrong time," says Lee. "But unfortunately, it's almost like rope-a-dope, he's on the ropes getting hit sometimes and he's not necessarily getting any benefit from engaging in that strategy."

The CPAC results carry little, if any, weight.

The straw poll often doesn't indicate who will get the Republican nomination.

But University of New Orleans Political Scientist Ed Chervenak says it's worth noting for those in Jindal's camp.

"He ended up pretty much at the bottom of the poll as he did last year," says Chervenak. "He's making every effort he can to appeal to conservatives, but they don't seem to be buying it. They don't really look at him as a viable contender."

The governor heads to New Hampshire later this week to speak at the Northeast Republican Leadership Conference. That happens to be the state that holds the first presidential primary election.

At the same time, Louisiana lawmakers begin their session.

"Most people will accuse the governor of not focusing on the state, that he's more interested in appealing to a national audience for his presidential ambitions than he is concerned about the state," says Chervenak. "So he's beginning to move into a lame duck status."

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