Barbour to GOP: Shape up

Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour speaks during the 2011 Republican Leadership Conference on June 17, 2011 in New Orleans, Louisiana. The 2011 Republican Leadership Conference runs through tomorrow and will feature keynote addresses from most of the major Republican candidates for president as well as numerous Republican leaders from across the country.
Getty Images/Justin Sullivan

(CBS News) Gov. Bobby Jindal, R-La., told his fellow Republicans at a GOP retreat yesterday that "We've got to stop being the stupid party," urging his colleagues to talk "like adults."

Former Gov. Haley Barbour, R-Miss., could not agree more.

"Bobby Jindal was exactly right," Barbour said Friday on "CBS This Morning." "When you consider what two Senate candidates...the comments that they made were stupid comments, offensive comments, and in today's world, when a candidate says something, the negative effect of that can spill over to lots of other candidates."

"One of those candidates, Todd Akin, actually received more than a million dollars of campaign contributions from...[Senate Democratic Leader] Harry Reid's PAC," said Barbour. "After he made the comment, you can see why the Democrats wanted to run against him."

Barbour also criticized Republicans' preoccupation with arcane budgetary and fiscal matters. "When you talk in Washington budget terms, you're committing yourself to a lot of things that not only the public doesn't understand, but it's very misleading."

For example, Barbour said, "In Washington, it's a cut when spending goes up, but just not as fast as was planned."

"For the average American family, that is 'spending goes up more slowly.'"

Barbour explained that Republicans "are upset" about the 2012 election results because "they feel like they could have won."

But despite his tough words for his own party, Barbour reserved an ample share of blame for the Obama administration, which he labeled "the most political presidency we've ever had."

"It's the perpetual campaign," he said. "As soon as the campaign was over, we started talking about the first serious piece of business, the 'fiscal cliff'. The Obama administration ran it purely like a political campaign."

And Obama's second inaugural address did not make Barbour feel any better about the next four years. "The vast majority of Americans are worried about economic growth, job creation, the gigantic debt crisis that the government has," he said. "He hardly mentioned that in his address."