Tancredo: Jindal politically dead; Grover Norquist should be jailed

At CPAC, the Conservative Political Action Conference, which is being held in D.C. this week, former Rep. Tom Tancredo joined the fireworks brigade by brushing off party leader Rush Limbaugh and blasting GOP leading light Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal.

Later, at a meeting of the Young Americans for Western Civilization, Tancredo told The Washington Independent’s David Weigel that “Gang of Five” neocon and anti-tax champion Grover Norquist should be jailed for advancing the cause of Muslim terrorism at the highest levels of U.S. government.

Think Progress has the super close-up video of firebrand Tancredo on Jindal:

TP: [Jindal] has gotten some flack for his performance on the response to Obama. I’m curious what your thoughts on it was.

TANCREDO: Great content. Lousy delivery. And I’m sorry to say this because I like him a lot. I served with him. Good guy. Solid guy. But I think that performance would very well have put the last nail in the coffin for him, for running for president. Mostly because what we are desperately looking for today in this party is a leader. Bobby Jindal is a great intellect, but his capacity to lead just is, his bearing, is not there. At least, it wasn’t there.

“I’m not saying he can’t overcome it, but I’m telling you it’s a major obstacle now. And I’m sorry about that… In this business, often times you need more sizzle than steak.”

Tancredo is likewise sour on Norquist and CPAC, aka “Mardi Gras for the right,” according to The Washington Independent piece.

They [CPAC] absolutely did anything they could to stop me from coming here… They hated the idea. That’s been the way they’ve done this for the last five years. Grover Norquist, they would rather have. That guy should be in jail.

Why jail?

Tancredo referenced Paul Sperry’s book Infiltration, which is about “Muslim spies” in Washington.

Here’s a taste from an article Sperry wrote for FrontPage on the case against Florida professor Sami al-Arian, who was charged with conspiring to help Palestinian terrorists kill Israelis and Americans.

Al-Arian had ingratiated himself with Rove’s best friend Grover Norquist, a powerful GOP operative in Washington sympathetic to Muslim causes. Norquist, whose name was invoked by al-Arian’s lawyers in the trial, started an Islamic lobbying group several years ago and recently married a Palestinian Muslim activist. The Islamic group, which was founded with seed money from Alamoudi, has placed a number of questionable Muslim activists — including the son of a Wahhabi preacher who helped Osama bin Laden’s second in command raise money — inside the Bush administration, including the White House, the Transportation Department and the Homeland Security Department, as well as other sensitive agencies.

Al-Arian, who has met privately with Norquist in his Washington offices, has said that Norquist “delivered” on his promise to get President Bush, via Rove, to agree to end the government’s use of undisclosed evidence to deport suspected Middle Eastern terrorists. A paid lobbyist for Norquist’s Islamic Institute — David Hossein Safavian — in fact lobbied the government hard on that issue, as I first reported in my book. (Safavian also shows up on Senate lobbying records as a paid agent for terrorist Alamoudi.) And before 9/11, al-Arian was scheduled to meet with Bush in person to discuss the issue. It seems plausible to some investigators now that al-Arian may have also got Norquist to deliver on the placement — or infiltration — operation. Even Safavian ended up inside the White House with a high-level job, before getting caught up in the Jack Abramoff corruption scandal and losing his coveted position.

As Joseph Brodsky put it: “Were we to choose our leaders on the basis of their reading experience and not their political programs, there would be much less grief on earth.”

Tancredo, today’s arch anti-immigrant crusader, offers a hint of perhaps another (real) reason he doesn’t like Norquist: jealousy.

“He’s a dangerous guy,” Tancredo told The Washington Independent. Then he added, “But they tout him here, especially on immigration.”

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