Bobby Jindal, the Republican who is governor of Louisiana, has an op-ed in Politico talking about what Republicans should be asking for in the fiscal cliff negotiations. He does it in a way that frames him as an anti-Washington candidate, which might be useful if he runs for president in 2016 against sitting senators and congressmen like Paul Ryan and Marco Rubio:
•A federal balanced budget amendment. S..This is an idea that is supported by virtually every American who does not live in the 202 area code. It's common sense. It is also laughed at in Washington. When you mention the BBA as a solution, they roll their eyes and write you off as a non-serious person. But the American public is dead serious about it, and they should be.
• Place a cap on discretionary and mandatory federal spending by fixing a limit on it tied to a percentage of GDP. Eighteen percent is a reasonable number in my book, but almost any number would be a victory at this point. Require a super majority vote to over-ride this limit, which would allow for recourse in a time of war or other national emergency. Again, this solution makes far too much sense to be taken seriously in Washington, a sure sign that it's a good idea. ...
• A super majority to increase taxes. Make it harder for the politicians in Washington to simply take more from Americans, thereby forcing them to stop growing government. Yes, Washington hates this idea, so it should be pursued with vigor.
• Term Limits. I know, I know, we can't do that. But we should. And while we are at it, how about forbidding congressmen from lobbying for 5 years after they leave office.
Discussing Governor Jindal's prospects over lunch with a friend this week, I said, half-joking, that no one from Louisiana should ever be elected president, because the political culture there is just too corrupt. Mr. Jindal seems to be saying, in essence, that the political culture in Washington is so corrupt it's even worse than Louisiana.