- The Washington Times - Sunday, November 18, 2012

The Republican party’s young leaders on Sunday continued to distance themselves from defeated presidential candidate Mitt Romney and ramped up the effort to paint the GOP in a new light.

Speaking on “Fox News Sunday,” Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal, chair of the Republican Governors Association, again repudiated Mr. Romney’s recent comments that he was unsuccessful in the Nov. 6 election because of “gifts” from the Obama administration to certain blocs of voters.

“I absolutely reject what he said. … You don’t start [to reach out to to voters] by insulting people, saying their votes were bought,” Mr. Jindal said.

Mr. Jindal appeared on the program with another popular rising star in the party, Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, vice chairman of the RGA. The duo is helping to lead the effort to rebrand the GOP, which continues to lose ground among minority, young and female voters. Each of those groups went for President Obama in the election by wide margins.

While not explicitly saying so, Mr. Jindal implied that Mr. Romney reinforced the perception that the Republican party is the voice of corporate CEOs and of the wealthy, and did not seem surprised that most minority voters and women chose to cast ballots for the president.

“We have to make it very clear: We’re not the party of big, of big business, big banks, big Wall Street, big bailouts. … We’re not the party trying to protect the rich. They can protect themselves. We’re the party that wants growth,” he said.

Reaching out to voters who heavily lean Democrat, such as Hispanics, remains a top priority for Republicans moving forward, Mr. Walker said.

“For anyone who wants to live their piece of the American dream, we have to show that we’re serious about reaching out and helping everyone,” he said.

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