While Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal, who is seriously considering a presidential run, saved most of his criticisms for President Barack Obama, he also criticized fellow Republicans for cuts to the defense budget.
"Republicans (in Congress) made a mistake," Jindal said, for accepting automatic budget cuts to defense spending three years ago known as sequester.
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At a speech sponsored by the American Action Forum, Jindal said he calls on all Republicans running for president and in Congress to increase defense spending. "We have to invest in defense," he said.
While Jindal is calling for an increase in defense spending, he also said he opposes any tax increase, leaving out how he would pay for increased defense spending.
"I'm against tax increases, period," he said.
Jindal also criticized President Obama's negotiations with Iran over their nuclear program. "I feel he prefers a bad deal over no deal," he said. After 47 Republican senators penned a letter that criticized the president over the negotiations and indicated that Congress would block any deal, without prompting, Jindal said he would sign the letter. He was the first Republican presidential candidate to do so.
Jindal, who is polling in the low single digits in presidential polls and is coming under pressure for large budget deficits in his state, is completing his second term as governor in Louisiana.
- Leigh Ann Caldwell