A new poll released Tuesday suggests Gov. Bobby Jindal is among the least popular governors in the U.S.
Public Policy Polling, of North Carolina, which generally works with Democrats, drew that conclusion after surveying 635 Louisiana voters between Feb. 6 and Feb. 9. The margin of error is plus or minus 3.9 percent for the overall survey.
Fifty-three percent said they disapprove of Jindal’s job performance.
A survey conducted late last year by Baton Rouge pollster Bernie Pinsonat found that 55 percent of 600 likely Louisiana voters questioned between Nov. 6 and Nov. 12, answered “poor” or “not so good” when asked to rate the governor’s job performance.
Jindal responded in a prepared statement: “I don’t care about polls. Here are the types of numbers that matter to me — jobs created, graduation rates, student test scores, and number of kids formerly trapped in failing schools who are now getting an equal opportunity for a good education. Those are the numbers that matter to me and to the people of Louisiana.”
Why is Jindal so unpopular?
These may be some reasons:
Public Policy Polling did not delve into the reasons for the governor’s lack of popularity. However, Jindal has drawn negative attention for trying to change public teacher tenure, tinkering with state employees’ retirement and his frequent travels outside Louisiana.
There are few political figures still in power who are as inextricably linked to corporate education reform as Jindal.
It is not a mistake that as the corporate education reform agenda becomes increasingly unpopular, so does Jindal.
There are other reasons why Jindal is under water for re-election, however.
Back in August, Chris Cilliza at The Fix looked at some of those:
Jindal's approval rating appears to be in steady decline. On Monday he dropped his tax reform plan that would have replaced income taxes with higher sales taxes, acknowledging a widespread backlash from the public, religious groups, business and state lawmakers in his own party. "It certainly wasn't the reaction I was hoping for," Jindal said.
That very public failure comes just 16 months ago after Jindal was easily reelected with two-thirds of the vote against minimal Democratic opposition. What happened? The answer is that the policies that have made Jindal an increasingly attractive national candidate have hurt him back home.
Deep budget cuts, particularly to health care and education spending, have been unpopular. Polling suggests that a small majority also opposes the vouchers at the heart of his educational reform plan, which a judge has deemed unconstitutional. While other Republicans gave in, Jindal has held firm in his opposition to a federally-funded Medicaid expansion -- an unpopular position, according to a Southern Media Opinion & Research poll.
So it's more than his education reform policies that have made Jindal so unpopular in Louisiana (so much so that he would barely beat Hillary Clinton in a presidential match-up were the stars to align and Jindal to win the GOP nomination.)
But they surely have contributed too.
And the good news is, Jindal's going to have a difficult time running for president with these underwater numbers in his home state.