The other Governor and son of Herbert Walker that was supposed to be President in the first place. Jeb (John Ellis Bush) Bush, which is like saying JFK Kennedy, is not loved by the conservative base of the Republican Party. Erick Erickson, who sounds like an uninspiring villain on the Cartoon Network and whose views represent the collective id of the Tea Party, summed it up by likening Jeb to a dying breed of Republican that might as well look to the Democratic Party for shelter: “Frankly, the idea of his candidacy is just a security blanket for the Linuses of the party who feel their control slipping away.” The major hurdle between Jeb and the nomination is his moderate conservatism. He believes in a role for government, that it should sometimes have active domestic policy, and that it should attempt to improve the lives of its people when the free market is unable or unwilling to do so, which is not what his rivals for the GOP nomination will sound like. The nucleation sites for these intra-GOP disagreements will be the common core and immigration reform, issues on which Jeb holds more progressive positions than his party.
It’s easy to assume, but wrong, that the Bush name is ruined in Presidential politics. It’s also convenient to forget to listen to the votes, and W was elected twice, the second time with 25% more votes (62 million) than the first (50 million). There’s also the great white washer of time; W’s approval has bounced closer to 50% since leaving office. The only effect the Bush name may have is that it may make the Jeb pill go down a little easier with the religious right, who championed his brother and truly loved his presidency wire to wire. Besides, George W. Bush received 44% of the Hispanic vote in his reelection bid. Add to that a Spanish speaking Jeb Bush, who supposedly even thinks in Spanish, favors a softer immigration policy, has a would be Latina first lady, and supports the common core, and you have yourself a winning coalition. But libertarians, so often called upon in times of opposition to Democratic administrations, loathed the previous Bush administrations and will see a Jeb nomination as a sign that the Tea Party is still just the crazy little brother of the GOP. The Republican primaries will have many themes, but the corporate Republican and anti-government libertarian fight for the soul of the GOP will be the major storyline, with Jeb at its center.