The nation will be watching our own Bobby Jindal tonight as he gives the response to Obama's pseudo-State-of-The-Union-Type address.
I'm watching Jindal too. He was elected with great promise in Louisiana; after the debacle that was Blanco and Katrina, he looked really good.
There are a lot of folks that have not been happy with Jindal, however. One is vocal radio host Moon Griffon. I adore Moon and listen to him regularly when I'm off work in the summer. He's a grassroots, homespun kind of guy. He thinks Jindal has been disingenuous in touting his six tax cuts for the state.
Moon points to the Stelly tax mess as evidence of that and to his credit, he is correct. Jindal is touting the repeal of the Stelly tax as one of his tax credits but to date, nobody is receiving that tax break. In fact, a non-profit group, Believe in Louisiana, ran an ad promoting Jindal last summer; the ad said "Jindal's getting rid of that awful Stelly tax; it's a $300 million income tax cut!" The group bought ad time on Moon's show and once Moon heard the ad, he dropped it and sent the check back.
C. B. Forgotston is even more vocal in his criticism of Jindal. C.B. has a blog and has run several posts demanding that Louisiana citizens "hold Bobby's feet to the fire" about the hiring freeze and outmigration just to name two.
LSUS Professor Jeff Sadow writes articulately about "the dunderhead chorus" who criticized Jindal's decison on the stimulus funds. He explains clearly the logic behind Jindal's refusal of the funds.
What sticks in my mind most is last summer when the state legislature tried to give themselves a huge pay raise immediately after the election. I wrote about it here; Jindal refused to veto the raise until the very last minute despite his campaign promise that the leges would not be allowed to do that. There were protests at every stop he made around the state and a recall petition was circulating until he finally pulled out the veto pen.
Jindal's speech tonight will be poised, articulate, intelligent and he will shine. He will be informed of his facts and he won't be vague. He won't say "uhm" and "uh" a thousand times. He might say "Let's be clear" too much - a favorite of his. Here's a preview of his style: