Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal (R), who recently launched a presidential exploratory committee, declined to say on Friday whether he would have invaded Iraq given what he knows now.
“At the time, I think President Bush absolutely made the right decision,” Jindal said in an interview with Iowa Public Television taped on Friday.
However, Jindal would not answer the “hypothetical question” that tripped up former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush (R) last week.
“I think we have to be very careful. There are a lot of these parlor games,” he said, refusing to say whether he would have authorized the invasion given what he now knows. “I don’t think it’s productive to play hypothetical games about foreign policies and important decisions.”
He did place blame for the current situation in Iraq on President Obama, not former President George W. Bush (R).
“The problems we face in Iraq today I don’t think were because of President Bush’s strength, but rather have come about because of President Obama’s weakness,” Jindal said. “President Obama didn’t listen to his military and other advisers and instead, he withdrew all of the troops without a status of forces agreement, without some kind of remaining, residual ability to keep stability in Iraq.”
In an interview with ABC News on Saturday, Jindal again refused to say whether he would have invaded Iraq.
“I don’t think that the parlor games are helpful,” he told ABC News.
“What is helpful,” Jindal continued, “is that at the time, given the information that they had, President [George W.] Bush made absolutely the right decision. Let’s remember, the world is a better place without Saddam Hussein.”
Jeb Bush stumbled last week when asked whether he would have invaded Iraq given what he knows now. Bush initially said that he would have authorized the invasion, but later backtracked and said he misheard the question. He eventually said that he “would not have gone into Iraq” if he had the information available today.
Watch Jindal’s interview with Iowa Public Television below: