Louisiana governor, McCain vice presidential prospect, and accomplished exorcist Bobby Jindal had an, ahem, interesting response to yesterday’s Supreme Court ruling prohibiting capital punishment for child rape: he wants to castrate child rapists instead. No, really:

Today, Gov. Jindal signed the “Sex Offender Chemical Castration Bill,” authorizing the castration of convicted sex offenders. They get a choice: physical or chemical. Oh, and they don’t just get castrated and leave - they still have to serve out their sentence.

I don’t know what definition of “cruel and usual punishment” Jindal adheres to, but it’s evidently different from that of most courts, which have consistently ruled that the use of physical castration as punishment violates the Eighth Amendment. While chemical castration has not been ruled upon, vasectomy has been ruled to violate the amendment as well, so it’s likely that the entire bill, along with similar ones in California and Florida, would be ruled unconstitutional if challenged.

If this guy is who conservatives have to turn to as “the next Ronald Reagan”, I’m beginning to think that even the next Walter Mondale could beat him.

—Dylan Matthews