Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal has come out swinging in New Hampshire. With the first GOP presidential debate approximately one month away and Jindal lagging behind in the polls, the governor took direct aim at Trump in response to a question from NH1.
Jindal, the son of immigrants who supports a hawkish view of immigration policy, told NH1 he disagreed with Trump's comments about illegal immigrants from Mexico being rapists.
"I see people as individuals, not members of ethnic or economic groups," Jindal said. "But what I believe is that we do need to secure the border and not as part of a comprehensive bill, but we need to secure the border."
While the governor reiterated his past statements that it is too easy for immigrants to enter the country and too hard to legally enter the U.S., his willingness to condemn Trump's controversial remarks is noteworthy.
Jindal's comments stand in stark contrast to Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, another immigration hardliner running for the GOP presidential nomination. Cruz told NBC on Sunday that he salutes Trump's focus on the issue and refused to criticize his fellow Republican.
"I salute Donald Trump for focusing on it," Cruz said. "He has a colorful way of speaking. It's not the way I would speak, but I'm not going to engage in the media's game of throwing rocks and attacking other Republicans."
Ohio Gov. John Kasich echoed Cruz's decision not to attack a fellow Republican in his comments to reporters about Trump on Tuesday. But Kasich also noted that he disagreed with Trump's comments.
But Jindal's remarks to press in New Hampshire were not limited to Trump. The governor came out swinging against other candidates as well, as he fights to make it to the debate stage next month.
"It's easy to be popular as a politician," Jindal told NH1. "Kiss babies, cut ribbons. You don't make a lot of change. We've had now in D.C. a lot of leadership from politicians who simply follow the polls. That's why we're in so much trouble."
Jindal may understandably not want to view poll numbers in his home state. June polling showed Jindal's favorability lagged 10 percentage points behind President Obama in his home state, and that Louisiana respondents supported Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton by approximately two percentage points in a hypothetical match-up.