In 2008, Gov. Bobby Jindal was scheduled to speak at the Republican Convention in St. Paul, Minn., but was forced to cancel at the last minute and remain in Louisiana as Hurricane Gustav bore down on the Gulf Coast. Not so this year. At least, not so far.
When the Republican National Committee (RNC) announced the initial list of headliners for its presidential convention later this month, Jindal's name was absent — as were the names of several other prominent Republicans who were considered to be in contention for Mitt Romney's vice-presidential pick. Romney, of course, ended up going with Wisconsin U.S. Rep. Paul Ryan, and late last week several names were added to the list of convention speakers — including Jindal, New Hampshire Sen. Kelly Ayotte and Ohio Sen. Rob Portman, all of whom had been mentioned as potential Romney veep picks. RNC chairman Reince Priebus referred to Jindal et al. as convention "headliners," but provided no information as to when each would speak — nor whether it would be in prime time, when the convention airs live on major networks.
In a statement supplied by the RNC, Jindal said, "I look forward to talking about the important choice facing our nation. We can either go the way of Europe, grow the public sector and make Americans more dependent on government or we can get behind Mitt Romney, reinvigorate the private sector and get our people back to work." Jindal spent most of last week in the Midwest stumping for Romney/Ryan.
The 2012 RNC Convention kicks off Aug. 27 in Tampa, Fla., with sessions from 1 p.m. to 10 p.m. Central time; the convention continues for three more days with sessions from 6:30 p.m. to 10 p.m. — Kevin Allman