He’s the son of Indian immigrants, a Louisiana native, Ivy League graduate, Rhodes scholar and former college president. A two-term Louisiana governor, Bobby Jindal has served in the U.S. House of Representatives and consulted for Fortune 500 companies. Born Piyush Jindal, he is the only presidential candidate who adopted his name from a favorite sit-com character (the youngest Brady). He also happens to be the youngest 2016 White House hopeful (at 13 days younger than Marco Rubio). Here is what Bobby Jindal believes on 10 key issues.
Budget: Pass Constitutional Amendment to balance the federal budget. Increase defense spending. Consider private accounts for Social Security.
Jindal supports a Constitutional Amendment requiring a balanced federal budget. As president, Jindal’s spending priority would be defense and he has called for increased military spending. While he has not recently outlined a specific approach to Medicare and Social Security, in 2005 Jindal supported President Bush’s proposal to create voluntary personal savings accounts as an option for workers.
Climate change: It is real. Humans are causing some amount, “but the real question is how much.”
The Bayou State governor told reporters in 2014 that he believes humans have had some effect on the climate, but the true amount is uncertain. Jindal has also said that the Obama administration is using climate change as a “Trojan horse” in order to increase government regulation. The conservative released his own 44-page energy plan called “Organizing Around Abundance” in 2014, in which he proposes eliminating many current environmental rules and instead focusing on forest management and other tools that he believes would not harm business.
Education: Get rid of Common Core. Roll back funding on state-support universities. Increase funding for community colleges.
Currently a leading opponent to the Common Core standards, Jindal has sued the Obama administration over the policy, arguing that the federal government has used funding to force states to adopt Common Core. He has also attempted to remove the standards in Louisiana by executive order. A state appeals court blocked that attempt in June. In 2010, Jindal was on the other side of the issue, strongly advocating that Louisiana adopt the state-initiated Common Core standards. On higher education, the Louisiana governor has pushed to significantly shrink the state-funded University of Louisiana system and he has championed community colleges and for-profit colleges.
Guns: Protect gun access.
A frequent speaker at National Rifle Association conferences, Jindal has compared the rights of gun ownership to religious liberty and has said the struggle to preserve and expand gun access is a pivotal fight thatcould last another generation. As governor, he has signed several gun bills into law, including a measure that prevents anyone from publishing concealed handgun permit information.
Immigration: Secure the border. Then allow a path to citizenship for undocumented residents. Expand legal immigration.
Jindal laid out his immigration position in a 2013 op-ed that called for the U.S. to first secure the southern border and to then set up a system where those in the country illegally could first get a legal status and later apply for citizenship. The Louisiana governor would also expand legal immigration, allowing more skilled foreign workers to enter the country and apply for citizenship. He would ban immigration from “radical Muslims”, including those who believe in Sharia law. In a London 2015 speech, Jindal sparked debate with his belief that some European nations provide “no-go” or safe zones for Muslims who want to live under Sharia law.
During the 2007 immigration debate, as a member of the U.S. House of Representatives, Jindal co-sponsored a bill to make English the official language of the United States and require government to use English in its functions.
Obamacare: Repeal and replace it with a new system.
Jindal, who ran the Louisiana health system when he was still in his 20s, has said the Affordable Care Act is a drain on the economy and bad healthcare policy. The governor has released a 23-page replacement proposal, called “America Next,” which would create a new tax deduction for healthcare and set up a new $100 billion government subsidy fund to help individuals earning low incomes or with pre-existing conditions purchase insurance. In 2013, Jindal proposed delaying the Medicaid expansion and health care exchanges under Obamacare to save enough money to avoid across-the-board budget cuts
Social Issues: Ban most abortions after 20 weeks and restrict abortion clinics. Marriage is between a man and a woman. If the Supreme Court upholds same-sex marriage, pass a Constitutional Amendment to ban it.
A social conservative, Jindal supports the “Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act,” which would ban abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy with exceptions for rape, incest or life of the mother. In 2014, he signed a law that required all Louisiana physicians who perform abortions to have admitting privileges at a hospital at least 30 miles away. The law effectively forced the closure of three of the state’s five abortion clinics. Earlier this year, his administration denied Planned Parenthood an operating license in New Orleans. On gay marriage, Jindal wrote a New York Times op-ed saying he would “hold firm” against same-sex unions. He told CNN’s “New Day” that should the Supreme Court overturn same-sex marriage bans, Congress and the states should pass a Constitutional Amendment restoring them. In the wake of Indiana’s religious liberty bill earlier this year, Jindal passed an executive order allowing businesses to refuse services related to same-sex marriage.
Taxes: Eliminate state income taxes. Look to local governments to plug Louisiana’s budget hole.
It is not yet clear how Jindal would address the federal tax system. As governor of Louisiana, he has pushed to eliminate state income taxes by eliminating some deductions or loopholes and trying to broaden the tax base. Faced with significant state budget shortfalls, Jindal has [proposed cutting back on tax credits that largely help local governments.
Iran and Israel: Current nuclear talks are a mistake. Increase support for Israel.
Positioned as a hawk on Iran, Jindal has criticized the continued nuclear talks led by the Obama administration, calling them “a bad deal for America and Israel.”
A strong supporter of both Israel and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Jindal believes that the Obama administration has been purposely disrespectful to the Jewish state.
Islamic State and Iraq: Keep open the option of sending U.S. ground troops.
The Louisiana governor has said that sending U.S. ground troops to fight the Islamic State militants should be an open option and he has criticized President Obama for his policy of limiting military deployment to the region to trainers and other specialists.