Republicans must change everything: Bobby Jindal

Bobby Jindal

The governor of Louisiana, seen as a potential presidential candidate in 2016, is calling on the Republican Party to "recalibrate the compass of conservatism'' as it rebounds from painful losses in the November elections that gave President Barack Obama a second term.

Gov. Bobby Jindal delivered the keynote address at the Republican National Committee's winter meeting Thursday night in Charlotte, North Carolina, becoming the latest high-profile conservative from outside Washington to call for fundamental changes inside the party.

"We've got to stop being the stupid party. It's time for a new Republican Party that talks like adults,'' he said. "We had a number of Republicans damage the brand this year with offensive and bizarre comments. I'm here to say we've had enough of that.''

Jindal offered little detail in the 25-minute address. He called on conservatives to shift their focus from Capitol Hill number crunching to "the place where conservatism thrives in the real world beyond the Washington Beltway.''

Republican officials from across the country are gathering in North Carolina this week to begin shaping a path forward following their party's November shellacking.

Despite a weak economy and a high unemployment rate, Republicans failed to regain control of the presidency and Senate, where Democrats gained seats. Republicans held on to their majority in the House of Representatives but lost seats there, too.

The outcome displayed the large and growing advantage of Democrats among women and minorities amid the Republican Party's sharp turn to the right in recent years.

Jindal said the Republican Party doesn't need to change its values, but, "might need to change just about everything else we do.''

Asked whether he was considering a presidential bid in 2016, Jindal brushed aside the question. "Any Republican that's thinking about talking about running for president in 2016 needs to get his head examined,'' he said. "We've got a lot of work to do.''

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