- The Washington Times - Friday, March 4, 2016

Former Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal penned an op-ed Thursday blaming President Obama for Donald Trump’s popularity in the GOP presidential primary.

“The president truly doesn’t get enough credit for creating one of the most polarizing forces in American politics today,” Mr. Jindal wrote for The Wall Street Journal. “No, not Hillary — that is more Bill’s doing. Let’s be honest: There would be no Donald Trump, dominating the political scene today if it were not for President Obama.”

Mr. Jindal, 44, suspended his presidential campaign in November. Last month, he announced that he would be supporting Marco Rubio for president, saying he believes the Florida senator can “unify” the Republican Party and win the election.

“After seven years of the cool, weak and endlessly nuanced ‘no drama Obama,’ voters are looking for a strong leader who speaks in short, declarative sentences,” the former Republican candidate continued. “Middle-class incomes are stagnant, and radical Islam is on the march across the Middle East. No wonder voters are responding to someone who promises to make America great again. You can draw a straight line between a president who dismisses domestic terrorist attacks as incidents of workplace violence and a candidate who wants to ban Muslims from entering the country.

“Mr. Obama likes to bemoan the increasing partisan divides across the country, as if he were merely a passive observer at best and a victim at worst,” Mr. Jindal wrote. “Uncharacteristically, the president is being too modest. He has created the very rancor he now rails against.

“President Obama loves to construct straw men so he can contrast his heroic self against them. But Donald Trump needs no characterization; he is capable of being absurd on his own, no outside help required,” he wrote. “Without President Obama, there is no Donald Trump. Mr. Trump often diagnoses the ills Mr. Obama has caused, but his prescriptions are just as often wrong. America deserves better.”

• Jessica Chasmar can be reached at jchasmar@washingtontimes.com.

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