Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal (R) on Monday formally launched a presidential exploratory committee, the clearest indication yet that he is gearing up for a White House run.
"For some time now, my wife Supriya and I have been thinking and praying about whether to run for the Presidency of our great nation," Jindal said in a statement. "If I run, my candidacy will be based on the idea that the American people are ready to try a dramatically different direction. Not a course correction, but a dramatically different path."
The Louisiana Republican has made frequent visits to key early voting states in recent months, testing a message centered on the need to "restore the American Dream," which he says President Obama's "weak leadership" has diminished. But despite his experience as governor and a compelling personal background as the American-born son of Indian immigrants, Jindal has struggled to make an impact in national polls of potential Republican candidates.
The Post’s David Fahrenthold dove into Jindal’s electoral prospects in March:
"[T]he frenetic Jindal is one of the great mysteries of the early 2016 campaign: the rising star who has stalled.
Not long ago, the Louisiana governor was the Republican candidate of the future — the son of immigrants and also a proud product of the Deep South. He is a devout Catholic, an experienced governor and — in a political sphere dominated by shallow cable-television shouters — a data-driven Rhodes scholar."
Jindal would likely face an uphill battle for the nomination if he decides to run. The GOP field is already extremely crowded — with six declared candidates and another half-dozen expected to announce in the coming month — while potential candidates such as former Florida governor Jeb Bush and Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker have already launched aggressive fundraising efforts, in part with the help of allied super PACs.
Jindal said he will decide whether to launch a full-fledged presidential campaign after the Louisiana legislative session ends on June 11.