Our VoiceIslamophobiaNews & Politics

Exactly who is Gov. Jindal trying to woo?

Kalia Abiade • Jan 29, 2015
Gov. Bobby Jindal (via Facebook)
Gov. Bobby Jindal (via Facebook)

Apparently, Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal thinks that citing a string of articles by one of the most prolific anti-Muslim “think tanks” helps his case that Muslim “no-go zones” exist throughout Europe. Maybe he even believes it helps his case, in general.

The governor began repeating this debunked claim just two days after Fox News apologized for letting Steve Emerson’s same spurious declarations go unchecked on their platform.

Jindal is now even using his official website to defend his assertion of “no-go zones.” (h/t TPM)

Near the top of his home page is a link to a Jan. 20 post on his website titled “Setting the Record Straight: Reports of ‘No-Go’ Zones in Europe.” On this page, Jindal lists 16 articles from the Gatestone Institute’s website, which features anti-Muslim activists as notorious and extreme as Robert Spencer, Geert Wilders, and, of course, Emerson.

Gatestone was founded in 2011 by Nina Rosenberg, a Sears Roebuck heiress who has been a key funder of anti-Muslim organizations including Daniel Pipes’ Middle East Forum, Frank Gaffney’s Center for Security Policy, and the David Horowitz Freedom Center, among others.

Pipes, a seasoned anti-Muslim strategist and thought leader, walked back the “no-go” nonsense he started in 2006 expressing “regret” about coining the term two years ago (though now, he’s back on the “no-go zone” bandwagon).

In any case, Jindal has stayed the course.

The governor’s echoing of the anti-Muslim faithful goes hand in hand with the prayer rally he hosted this past weekend with the American Family Association. Yes, that American Family Association. There, Jindal declared “Our God wins!” a line likely to appeal to the AFA, whose just-ousted frontman has “contended for years” that First Amendment rights provide religious liberty protections for Christians only.

Maybe Jindal believes in “no-go zones” and maybe he’s fine with the AFA’s stance on Muslims, not to mention women, Jews, gays and immigrants. But, surely he’s learned a thing or two about politics during his time as a Congressman, head of his state’s university system, adviser to high-level federal officials and in his seven years as governor.

He knows how to play the game.

And with his knowledge, Jindal opted out of parade of other Republican presidential hopefuls in Iowa in order to attend the prayer rally.

All of this begs the question: Is Jindal’s willingness to associate with such bigoted ideology merely an attempt to appeal to the most extreme faction of supporters and voters?

At the top of Jindal’s official website, a tagline reads “I’m asking you to once again believe in Louisiana.”

But while the governor is willing to openly associate with known hatemongers and use his official government website to prop the claims of an pointedly Islamophobic agenda, a plea to believe in anything Jindal says might be too much to ask.

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