Friday, April 20, 2012

Bobby and the Big Apple

Posted By on Fri, Apr 20, 2012 at 4:10 PM

The invitation to the New York Republican State Committee dinner.
  • The invitation to the New York Republican State Committee dinner.
Gov. Bobby Jindal was the featured guest at last night's New York Republican State Committee dinner at the Sheraton New York in midtown Manhattan. (Dinner: $1,000; photo op with the gov, $5,000. I think we just found a way to raise funds to cover Louisiana's mental health and secondary education needs. Though the price did include a copy of Jindal's book, Leadership and Crisis.)

How did the 45-minute speech (before dinner!) go? Take it away, Reid Pillifant of Capital New York:

Some people liked it.

"Bobby Jindal is inspirational," said Carl Paladino, the party's last gubernatorial nominee, after the speech. "He's rocking."

Others seemed less inspired. As the speech wore on, Jindal's applause lines drew less and less of a response, and tables broke out into their own visible side conversations, while Jindal joked about how the vacuums used to clean up after the Deepwater Horizon spill were the same ones used to empty "port-o-potties after a football game on a Friday night."

Dinner waited in the wings until he finished, right around the 45-minute mark.

"I can assure you that I will speak shorter than our prior speakers, because the food is here," said State Senate Majority Leader Dean Skelos when he finally took to the podium, to laughs and cheers.

$5,000 may seem steep for dinner, but then again, it's dinner in New York. Heck, even in the East Village, two measly pounds of crawfish will put you back $30. But you don't get a copy of Leadership in Crisis with the mudbugs.

EDITED TO ADD: Charles Maldonado points out this account of the evening from Newsday. After reading it, it sounds like Jindal went on too long, which is excusable, and that the hosts were breathtakingly rude, which is not:

And, after a dinner break and Jindal’s departure, the next two speakers made pointed references. “I’m going to speak a little shorter than the prior speaker,” Senate Majority Leader Dean Skelos (R-Rockville Centre) said -- generating applause.

“My father gave me some great advice, too,” Assembly Minority Leader Brian Kolb (R-Canandaigua), said referring to a part of Jindal’s speech. “Be brief and be gone.”

Jindal’s team placed copies of his book, “Leadership and Crisis,” on the chairs throughout the Sheraton ballroom. Afterward, some New York Republicans joked about trying to give their copy away.

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