Possible GOP rift as Jeb Bush considers presidential run

politics | Nov 23, 2012 | By Martin Barillas


Jeb Bush, brother and son of former Bush presidents, may be considering a bid for the presidency himself. In a report by the New York Times, supporters of Bush say that the former governor of Florida is  "weighing financial and family considerations" for a future run. Even while Jeb Bush is popular in Florida, there remains concern that the unpopularity of his elder brother President George W. Bush makes him a less viable candidate. Even so, his support for immigration and education reform and nostalgia within the Republican establishment for his father – President George H.W. Bush – may make his candidacy attractive to the GOP. 
Jeb Bush has concerns, according to NYT, over the possible effects his candidacy would have on his son’s political future. Young Jeb Bush, Jr. operates a political action committee in support of conservatives of Hispanic heritage, while George P. Bush plans to run for land commissioner of Texas. 
Plans by the Bush clan run athwart the political aspirations of Republican Senator Marco Rubio of Florida, a rising star in the GOP firmament who has urged Republicans and Tea Party activists to at least moderate their rhetoric about immigration. Jeb Bush has long mentored Rubio, a Cuban-American of definite conservative credentials. A split between the two could cause a rift in the GOP as the party still reels from the Governor Mitt Romney’s defeat at the hands of President Obama.
Jeb Bush, Jr. said in a TV interview on November 20 that he hopes that his father will run for and win the presidency in 2018, thus becoming the third member of the family to hold the office. Speaking on CNN, the young Bush said he hopes his father becomes the third member of his family to seek the presidency . The elder Jeb Bush flirted with the idea of running in the 2012 contest but backed down. 
The young Bush spoke about a recent statement Rubio made that made tongues wag among political analysts. On November 18, it was reported that Senator Rubio called the age of the earth “one of the great mysteries” when queried by GQ magazine.  “I'm not a scientist, man,” Rubio said in the interview. “I can tell you what recorded history says, I can tell you what the Bible says, but I think that's a dispute amongst theologians and I think it has nothing to do with the gross domestic product or economic growth of the United States.”  
Jeb Bush Jr. characterized Rubio’s response as a “strange answer” to a “strange question,” adding “We’ve got to be a kind of pro-science and pro-technology party. And I think Marco Rubio is just that.” Bush continued, “On the Earth question, I guess I have to read more closely in terms of getting a better understanding, but, yeah, kind of a strange response, I guess.”



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Spero News editor Martin Barillas is a former US diplomat, who also worked as a democracy advocate and election observer in Latin America. His first novel 'Shaken Earth', is available at Amazon.

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