WASHINGTON — Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal on Wednesday demanded that federal officials abandon their challenge of his state's voucher system.
In an appearance blocks from the Justice Department that was just as much about politics as policy, Jindal said President Barack Obama and Attorney General Eric Holder would not send their children to failing schools but are fighting a program that helps students from low-income families attend better schools. Jindal, a Republican considering a 2016 presidential bid, said Obama and Holder are denying students in his state the same opportunities that their own children enjoy.
"Our children only grow up once. They only get one chance to get a good education," Jindal said.
Louisiana's school voucher program has become a political flashpoint, with congressional Republicans this week joining critics of the Justice Department's lawsuit, which seeks to block Louisiana from issuing new tuition vouchers in some districts still under desegregation orders. Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush joined Jindal in demanding that the Justice Department back down.
"This is purely political," said Bush, a Republican who is being urged to run for president in 2016. "I have no idea why they made this decision."