Jindal, the governor of Louisiana, was the first Indian-American politician to run for president, but his historic bid for the White House didn’t feel so historic to many Indian-Americans. There were Indians on the left who mocked him, and Indians on the right who questioned him.
He changed his first name from Piyush to Bobby and converted to Christianity in high school. Overall, Jindal’s brand of identity politics (or lack of identity politics) disappointed many of his fellow South Asians.
But it wasn’t always that way. When Jindal first ran for office in 2003, many Indian-Americans considered him a breakout star.
These days, the Indian-American community’s once-golden son has become the black sheep. Many say they consider the Louisiana governor a huge disappointment.
They say in private the governor took their money but, in public, he downplayed his ethnic identity.
In suspending his campaign for president, Bobby Jindal gave a nod to his immigrant roots.
“To put this in perspective, my parents came to this country 45 years ago; they came here for freedom and opportunity,” Jindal told Fox News Tuesday night. “I don’t think in a million years they would have ever imagined that I’d be governor, or that one day I would be running for president of the United States.”