October 16th, 2007
05:50 PM ET
15 years ago

Carville: Jeb Bush will be GOP nominee

Will Jeb Bush be the 2008 Republican nominee? CNN analyst James Carville said yes, in a panel discussion Tuesday.

NEW YORK (CNN) - Democratic strategist and CNN analyst James Carville tossed out a provocative idea during a panel discussion on politics Tuesday.

At CNN's America Votes 2008 Breakfast, the chief architect of Bill Clinton's successful 1992 presidential run predicted that former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush will be the Republican nominee in 2008. Jeb is a younger brother of President Bush.

Carville bolstered his prediction, highlighting Jeb Bush's career: He was a successful governor of a large state, he enjoys the support of social conservatives, he speaks Spanish, and "he's somebody the party could rally around," Carville said.

"There is nobody in this field who can rally the Republican Party; he's the only person in America that can do it," he added.

But fellow CNN analyst and former Oklahoma GOP Congressman J.C. Watts disagreed with Carville, saying, "The conventional wisdom caucus, the establishment of the Party, pardon my English, but they ain't going to allow that to happen."

There has been high speculation that Jeb Bush might make a run at the White House in 2008, but then, late last year, he said he would not run.

Former President George H.W. Bush suggested to CNN's Larry King last April that "Bush Fatigue" may be one of the reasons the former Florida governor is sitting out the 2008 race.

But the former president predicted his youngest son may enter politics again in the future.

"I hope that Jeb, who left office looking good, is not through with politics," the elder Bush said. " I think he's a good man, most other people think that, a man of principle. And I think he's got a future."

In addition to Carville and Watts, the panel included CNN analysts and contributors Paul Begala, Donna Brazile, Gloria Borger, Bill Bennett, and Amy Holmes.

- CNN's John Helton and Alexander Mooney

Filed under: Jeb Bush
soundoff (168 Responses)
  1. Tim, Iowa

    Nobody cares what that looney Carville says except you at CNN.

    October 16, 2007 05:46 pm at 5:46 pm |
  2. John Starnes Tampa Florida

    The last thing this weary, sorely- damaged country needs is yet another Bush in the White House. Time for that greedy, power-hungry dynasty to end, or move in with the Saudi royalty they are such cozy pals with.

    October 16, 2007 05:48 pm at 5:48 pm |
  3. Kiz, Bear, DE

    Oh NO, Please NO....Not another one

    October 16, 2007 05:49 pm at 5:49 pm |
  4. PB, Brooklyn, NY

    Oh, hell no! This worries me because he doesn't actually have to be voted in. He can just steal the election. He has experience in that.

    October 16, 2007 05:53 pm at 5:53 pm |
  5. Kate, Denver DO

    This is a joke, right? James Carville – you kidder!

    October 16, 2007 05:56 pm at 5:56 pm |
  6. David, Dallas Tx

    Jared from Nashville, TN said: George H. W. Bush was one of the most qualified President's in our history. He was a two term Congressman, Ambassador to the UN, Chairman of the RNC, Ambassador to China, Director of the CIA, and two term Vice President. To describe him as incompetent is clearly wrong as well.

    Agreed. I'm not a fan of Bush Sr. or Bush Jr., but it is kind of silly to say he wasn't well-qualified.

    Come to it, he had far better credentials for the presidency than ANY of the current contenders, period. That's one of the problems. Bush Jr. was a novice in world politics, and compared to Bush Sr., the next president will be as well.

    As far as Carville's comments go, I'm surprised more people can't see through him. He's saying that to stoke the fires of disillusion and discontent among Republican voters with the current field. The more voters who say, "Carville is right", the more who will be dissatisfied with the current crop of candidates, and when Jeb doesn't run (as he patently won't) the more Republicans stay home on election day due to disillusion.

    As others have pointed out, he is on Clinton's team. He's setting her up for a win–always.

    I say these things, and I'm a liberal democrat, folks. 😉

    October 16, 2007 05:56 pm at 5:56 pm |
  7. David, Minneapolis, MN

    God save us from being executed in the grocery stores while Hillary Clinton and her first man are sending Christmas cookies (sorry holiday snacks)to the terrorists with happy holiday cards asking them to please Mr. Bad guys stop killing us and your own son's and daughters. The packages will be packed by anti-war volunteers in bomb shelters. I'd vote for a dead man before Hill and Bill. How sick are people backing those two. This country needs someone with guts not this phony Mr and Mrs Clinton monarchy. Wake up Mr. and Mrs. America. This is not a tea party.

    October 16, 2007 05:57 pm at 5:57 pm |
  8. Lori-Florida

    I am all for it. There is not one person on either side that I would want vote for that is running right now.

    To Bubba's comment who lives in Ga-Bush did a wonderful job leading us through the hurricane season. I live in Polk County that saw 4 hurricanes in one season. Nobody in Fl was complaining about his leadership.

    October 16, 2007 06:00 pm at 6:00 pm |
  9. Bill, Streamwood, IL

    Where can I get what Carville is on?

    This is the dumbest things of which I have ever heard. The Bush name is synonymous with eliteism, deceit, corruption and bad leadership. Does Carville think we have forgotten this already.

    Just give us four years of President Hillary Clinton and then we just might be ready for Jeb.

    ... but if Jeb gets elected in 2012, that means that Chelsea Clinton will follow in 2016 and then Jenna Bush in 2020.

    I need a drink!

    October 16, 2007 06:01 pm at 6:01 pm |
  10. Jeb Supporter, Washington DC

    Run, Jeb, run! PLEASE!

    He is different from his father and brother. He is better.

    October 16, 2007 06:02 pm at 6:02 pm |
  11. James, Phoenix AZ

    Carville, Begala, Brazile – Clinton Apologists and symptomatic of what went wrong with the Democratic Party and politics in general.

    Carville's views and predictions are best used when on grass or plants (read: BS)

    October 16, 2007 06:02 pm at 6:02 pm |
  12. JFK, Phx, AZ

    I agree, we have had enough of the Bush family in politics! NO MORE! But sure, run Jeb against Hillary for the entertainment value???

    October 16, 2007 06:03 pm at 6:03 pm |
  13. maggie IL

    our country is in desperate need of a viable third party...we have got to get away from both of these; EQUALLY corrupt parties.

    October 16, 2007 06:09 pm at 6:09 pm |
  14. Bob, Springfield, MA

    Bush '08? Great idea! How about Bush/Bin Laden '08. Since they are in business together, that would be a fine ticket. Carville is on serious drugs.

    October 16, 2007 06:11 pm at 6:11 pm |
  15. Milo Janus, Dunellen, NJ

    The only way Jeb could be elected is if he was disowned from the Bush family and ran as a Democrat. America is tired of the Bushes and have given up on Republican promises of small government, fiscal responsibility and a mindful foreign policy. They are also tired of being reminded to be afraid all the time, ala Rudolph Guiliani (he was the mayor of NYC during September 11th, in case you forgot!... he's not here to remind you).

    That leaves:

    -McCain: tied his platform too closely to the war in Iraq

    -"Dead Thompson": he tried to arrive "fashionably late" but realized he made the party a dud after he got there. Lazy work ethic, boring speeches, and....zzzzzz zzzz excuse me, I fell asleep just thinking about him.

    – Ron Paul: fear is the only hand the GOP can play right now, so they'll never run a candidate who speaks the truth about Iraq and geopolitics.

    – Mitt "I was against everything in my platform before I was for it" Romney: He looks like John Kerry with a greasy hairdo, and makes his nuanced stances on the issues look consistent by comparison. What a joke!

    – Huckabee: nice guy. Probably the least worst of all the bunch. But he's pushing that flat tax, which is the stupidest thing I've ever heard of. Pin the tax base solely to consumer confidence. Great idea!! Doh.

    – all the rest: none of them stand a snowball's chance in HELL because they all have R's next to their name.

    October 16, 2007 06:13 pm at 6:13 pm |
  16. Shannon, Austin, TX

    Hmmm... Jeb Bush vs. Hillary Clinton. Given that choice, I say that we clone Hitler's mustache and run him as an independant.

    October 16, 2007 06:14 pm at 6:14 pm |
  17. Bill Nelsen

    There are rumors Bush's grandftaher was in with the Nazis in Germany. After 6+ years of Bush rule, I believe it runs in the family. I will never forget Jeb cheatng to steal the 2000 election or lying to everyone about Terri Schiavo. He is better than GW but that's not saying much. Anyone would be.

    October 16, 2007 06:24 pm at 6:24 pm |
  18. Bigmamma Abramoff

    Don't forget how Jeb scrubbed his office of the Jack Abramoff Scandel. We have proof, lots of it. Free my son.com

    October 16, 2007 06:26 pm at 6:26 pm |
  19. Ralph Moorestown NJ

    One problem -- his brother has made the family name "poison" in 75% of USA homes due to his Iraq record!

    October 16, 2007 06:27 pm at 6:27 pm |
  20. BH, Quad Cities

    If the Bush Crime Family saw the '08 election as winable or stealable, Jeb would be marketed as some sort of savior.

    He won't run against the Dem Tsunami coming in '08, even if it means interrupting our budding lil Hereditary Monarchy.

    Instead, they'd be more likely to leave the next President set up for failure by 'burning all the fields and villages' behind them – leaving unmanageable disasters in Iraq and the economy. Then run Jeb in 2012.

    October 16, 2007 06:28 pm at 6:28 pm |
  21. Paul Richardson Dallas, TX

    A friend of mine who works in network news in New York says that this tidbit is making the rounds right now:
    On a recent private jet flight, a rather tipsy Rupert Murdoch said this about his adopted homeland: "You know what U.S.A. stands for to me? Uneducated silly arseholes. I make billions every year pedaling rah-rah bollocks to the American public and I'm bloody happy to do it. If and when the pendulum swings the other way, I'll make billions more catering to them with a different kind of populist claptrap. Compared to doing business in China where they're very discerning, the States was like taking candy from a baby."

    October 16, 2007 06:29 pm at 6:29 pm |
  22. Julie L. So. Lake Tahoe, NV

    I'm sure Carville made the comment to stir the pot. The idea of another Bush now is absurd...he'd love to see it and know it would reinforce the foregone conclusion...a Dem will win the presidency...because the Repubs have made such a monumental mess out of most everything, exhibited such derision for the law and left a nation and the world feeling our "leadership" is dim, dangerous and ready to shot from the hip. Bush is now just a nail in the coffin.

    October 16, 2007 06:33 pm at 6:33 pm |
  23. Ray - Florida

    If another Bush runs, and buy's his way into offer the US, and the rest of the world is f&*&ed!!!
    Plan and Simple...

    October 16, 2007 06:36 pm at 6:36 pm |
  24. Phil-Morro Bay, CA

    I've been saying this for months. For Bush to have someone to follow him that might be able to salvage somekind of worthwhile legacy, Cheney would resign and Bush would annoint his brother Jeb to take his place. Been surprised before? Get ready!

    October 16, 2007 06:41 pm at 6:41 pm |
  25. joe leonardi

    Jeb would be the guy, but G.W. has killed the Bush family's political future. This country would never elect a Bush again. Qualified and competent as Jeb is he will never undo the damage his older brother has done to his party or his country.
    Now if he had beaten Childes the first time out for governor, what a different legacy the Bush family would have had.

    October 16, 2007 06:46 pm at 6:46 pm |
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