Bush praises 2012 candidate
May 24th, 2011
10:28 AM ET
4 years ago

Bush praises 2012 candidate

(CNN) – Just because he's not running for president doesn't mean former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush can't wade into the presidential waters.

Bush lent support to Republican presidential candidate Tim Pawlenty Tuesday via Twitter.

"I admire truth telling and t-paw sure did it to open his campaign," Bush wrote in a Tweet before linking to an opinion piece in The Wall Street Journal.

In his presidential announcement Monday in Iowa, Pawlenty called for means testing for Social Security beneficiaries and reduced ethanol subsidies, an unpopular position among conservatives in the Hawkeye State.

"The truth about federal energy subsidies, including federal subsidies for ethanol, is that they have to be phased out. We need to do it gradually. We need to do it fairly. But we need to do it," the former two-term Minnesota governor said. "Conventional wisdom says you can't talk about ethanol in Iowa or Social Security in Florida or financial reform on Wall Street. But someone has to say it."

Tuesday's piece in The Wall Street Journal praised Pawlenty for "refusing to stick to the script for candidates looking to harvest votes in February's Iowa caucuses."

"Mr. Pawlenty has passed an early test of fortitude," the piece reads.

Persistent rumors that Bush may seek the Republican presidential nomination in 2012 prompted him to release a statement Sunday, again saying he will not run.

"While I am flattered by everyone's encouragement, my decision has not changed," Bush said in the statement. "I will not be a candidate for president in 2012."

His decision leaves many in the Bush clan in search of a candidate to support in the next election. Some had hoped to back Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels, who announced Sunday he would not run for the 2012 GOP presidential nomination.

Former U.S. ambassador to China Jon Huntsman, who is considering a run for president, visited former President George H.W. Bush and first lady Barbara Bush at their compound in Kennebunkport, Maine Monday. Pawlenty met with the former president at his office in Houston, Texas a few weeks ago.

– CNN Deputy Political Director Paul Steinhauser contributed to this report.


Filed under: 2012 • Jeb Bush • Tim Pawlenty
soundoff (41 Responses)
  1. Squigman

    Backed by a member of the family, that ruined your future, and possibly the future of your children. Yeah, I'm sure I'll vote for this poor excuse for a human being.

    May 24, 2011 11:15 am at 11:15 am |
  2. Rickster

    Yeah, yeah, yeah......Jeb Bush...he's not going to run and he's not going to win. This article, like most of the articles that CNN puts up here is just another diversion from just what a terrible, awful job Barack Obama is doing as president. Things are in the toilet and getting no better. He's actually beginning to distance himself from Jimmy Carter as The Worst President Ever.

    May 24, 2011 11:15 am at 11:15 am |
  3. NVa Native

    It's too bad Dubbers destroyed whatever credibility the Bush family had. Jeb seems to be a thinking, rational and conscientious person- which is exactly what the Republican party has so few of. But with the memory of that ape of a brother on his back – Jeb has no chance in hell of getting into the White House.

    May 24, 2011 11:16 am at 11:16 am |
  4. John

    And they say he was to be the Smart One. I don't think so. The Last thing America need Is another BUSH.

    May 24, 2011 11:23 am at 11:23 am |
  5. Tim

    I have lived in Minn. all of my life and I have to say that Mr. Pawlenty was one of the most disingenuous governors we've ever had. Now keep in mind that we have a pretty strong third party up here (remember Jesse Ventura?) so the votes were always split three ways. Had we had run-off voting I doubt T-Paw would have survived. Anyway, T-Paw never did receive 50% of the vote. Instead of raising taxes here he raised fees and took credit for not raising taxes. Anyway, it certainly wasn't enough to balance our budget because now here, at the end, we've got a 6MMM shortfall and the Rs in our House and Senate (lots of freshmen) once again think that cutting will take care of this shortfall with some really weird voodoo economics and lots of rhetoric.
    T-Paw has always been disingenuous to us Minnesotans and has not been very popular here. Some of his vetoes had to be over ridden because of the unpopularity of his sometimes draconian decisions. I feel that if you ask the people here, the majority would say he was one of the poorer governors we've had in a long time, Jesse included. All of this stuff will come out as the campaign moves on. Our country needs serious people; not more schmucks like him.

    May 24, 2011 11:24 am at 11:24 am |
  6. America First

    TPAW, "You can`t handle the truth"!

    a.) Minnesotans would not hire you back to lead them,

    b.) In a time where our nation need someone focused on paying off the national debt, You sir, left your state with a $6 BILLION deficit. You played accounting games and gimmicks to hide the financial weakness under your tenure. We don`t need a repeat of your track record in Washington.

    c.) Truth is you have ZERO foreign policy exposure to even draw on. When we have a President that the world respects, whom the world will follow into battle, why would we gamble and put YOU in office as Commander-in-Chief?

    May 24, 2011 11:26 am at 11:26 am |
  7. vet in texas

    GSMITH

    The biggest joke in 2012, is why anybody would vote for Barack Obama. The Republicans have many great candidates that will defeat President Obama.
    =======================

    Please tell me which one of the "oh great candidates" it will be...........

    May 24, 2011 11:29 am at 11:29 am |
  8. vet in texas

    Rickster

    Yeah, yeah, yeah......Jeb Bush...he's not going to run and he's not going to win. This article, like most of the articles that CNN puts up here is just another diversion from just what a terrible, awful job Barack Obama is doing as president. Things are in the toilet and getting no better. He's actually beginning to distance himself from Jimmy Carter as The Worst President Ever.

    ===========
    If you can't wrap yourself around reality that W was in fact the worst president ever, then your starting your argument on as false a platform as Mitt Romney, you have to make Obama a one termer to prove your point, but your point was all started on false thinking based on what others told you. Had the GOP started his term with nothing but facts, then you'd have a valid point, but because they didn't and did nothing but push "your buttons" with lies and mistruths on everything he's doing (which by the way 90% of what he's doing a previous republican administration implemented, voted for, and proposed) and not being honest on what they are doing, then you and alot of others will be scratching your heads wondering why you gave all this time, money, and energy (negative energy) to frauds like the Camping guy and 5/21.

    I laugh at you daily Mr. Rickster, thanks for the laughs

    May 24, 2011 11:35 am at 11:35 am |
  9. thomas

    The Third time is the charm ?
    Jeb Bush know's he can't go through the white house front door , so he's looking at the VP back door !

    Viva Bush ?

    May 24, 2011 11:35 am at 11:35 am |
  10. @OmegaRaiel

    T-Paw spouted nothing but the same old propaganda. No truth.

    May 24, 2011 11:38 am at 11:38 am |
  11. GSMITH

    Presdent Bush was a better president the President Obama and that is the truth. Democrats you can not handle the truth. Republicans will be back in power come 2013.

    May 24, 2011 11:40 am at 11:40 am |
  12. Big Al

    George W. Bush will go down in history as one of our greatest presidents. He provided real leadership. We had tax cuts that provided one of the strongest economic periods resulting in millions and millions of jobs. We went to war in 2 countries and had victories. It was George W. Bush that got Osama Bin Laden, not Barack Obama. The reason we imploded economically is that Barack Obama was elected president.

    Now, we must back Sarah Palin for president. Only she can save our country.

    May 24, 2011 11:41 am at 11:41 am |
  13. a Minnesotan

    All Pawlenty would do as president is lower taxes and replace them with "fees". He would then boast about how he lowered taxes. And if the end of his tenure as governor is any indicator, he'd be spending a great deal of time ignoring concerns in the US while gallivanting around the globe.

    May 24, 2011 11:44 am at 11:44 am |
  14. FactCheck

    Well there you have it. If a Bush says so, it must be true (like those WMDs, the Iraq War paying for itself, being greeted as liberators, Mission Accomplished, etc. etc.).

    May 24, 2011 11:52 am at 11:52 am |
  15. FactCheck

    Presdent Bush was a better president the President Obama and that is the truth. Democrats you can not handle the truth.
    ---

    Laura? Is that you? Get over it already.

    May 24, 2011 11:53 am at 11:53 am |
  16. S.B. Stein E.B. NJ

    The problem is that the truth can be subjective. I have little tolerance for people who don't seem to offer anything new when their ideas have been tried and failed. If they are willing to neogitiate, then it might be possible to move forward. I don't think most if not all Republicans don't understand this.

    May 24, 2011 11:59 am at 11:59 am |
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