November 15th, 2010
09:29 AM ET
12 years ago

Jeb says 'never say never' to White House bid

(CNN) – Ex-Florida Gov. Jeb Bush has said time and again he's not running for president in 2012, but the younger brother of former President George W. Bush also isn't ruling out a potential White House run in the future.

"You never say never about anything," said the younger Bush brother in an interview with CNN's Candy Crowley Sunday that featured both the former Florida governor and his ex-president brother. The comments were a direct response to whether he had foreclosed any possibility of seeking the presidency one day.

"I'm going to be involved," he continued. "I have an education reform foundation, trying to improve the plight of our education systems around the country. And I'm helping candidates that I believe in." Video after the jump.

But when it comes to running against what now appears will be a vulnerable President Obama in 2012, Jeb again emphatically closed the door. The younger Bush also issued a clear "No" to running for chairman of the Republican National Committee, as some conservative bloggers have urged.

Related: Paging Jeb Bush for 2012

"I really have to stay focused on this goal of achieving some financial independence, financial security for my family," he said.

Meanwhile, the former president backed up his brother's 2012 denials, saying, "He's chosen not to run this time and I finally have to believe him."

Still, the older Bush brother said he's urged his brother to run for the White House and hopes he does one day.

"He's a successful person," said the former president of his brother. "He's smart. He's honest. And he had an unbelievably good record as the governor of Florida."

Talk of a potential Jeb Bush run has increased in Beltway circles as the former president's name no longer carries quite the toxic political baggage it once did - keeping political analysts speculating 2012 may be a ripe year for the younger Bush to take on the man who succeeded his brother.

The former president added his brother's star power within the GOP goes beyond his famous last name, citing his record as a two-term governor of Florida.

"Had he been a failure as governor of Florida, they wouldn't be touting him. And if he wasn't an honest guy, they wouldn't be touting him," he said. And if he wasn't, you know, a decent person who had a great heart, they wouldn't be touting him."

Filed under: 2012 • Jeb Bush • President Bush
soundoff (69 Responses)
  1. zippy

    Jeb has all of the qualifications needed to be successful with Republican voters. He's white.

    November 15, 2010 10:25 am at 10:25 am |
  2. steve a, new braunfels, texas

    NOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!! no more Bushs, please God!!!!!!!!!!!

    November 15, 2010 10:25 am at 10:25 am |
  3. Jaywing

    I'll say it for you - NEVER!

    November 15, 2010 10:28 am at 10:28 am |
  4. Myron

    If Jeb figures he can beat Obama, he'll run. If he figures he can't, he won't. It's as simple as that, no matter what he says. Before November's results, I would have said America is not dumb enough to elect another Bush.

    November 15, 2010 10:29 am at 10:29 am |
  5. Dennis

    Good God, we haven't done enough damage to this country already?

    November 15, 2010 10:30 am at 10:30 am |
  6. Jeff

    Please run Jeb! Your candidacy for President will lock up a win for the Democrats.

    November 15, 2010 10:31 am at 10:31 am |
  7. Byrd

    Anyone who would even considering voting for another Bush is quite simply insane. Jeb is the worst of the entire lot, surpassed in idiocy only by his brother George, and Palin.

    November 15, 2010 10:32 am at 10:32 am |
  8. wilbur889

    Ok Jeb.Run I dnt think he has a smowballs chance left outside on a summers day.As a former Fl resident your school policy of No Child Left Behind was a disaster.Schools ranked 49 out of 50 states,Nor did you have the backbone to save Terry Shivo.People have not forgotten

    November 15, 2010 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  9. Al

    Yikes! Please, do say "NEVER!"

    November 15, 2010 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  10. Glenn from Cary

    In your case, Jeb, it's okay to say never. But let me save you the trouble. NEVER, JEB. NEVER. NEVER. NEVER.

    November 15, 2010 10:34 am at 10:34 am |
  11. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    And if he wasn't an honest guy, they wouldn't be touting him," he said.
    I seem to recall a key 'vote count' in Florida during your Presidential election, where your brother was everything BUT honest.
    So you can save your character assesment Shrub.

    November 15, 2010 10:34 am at 10:34 am |
  12. Sheila Drake

    Jeb lost our respect here in Florida after he supported corrupt corporate raider Rick Scott for Governor.

    November 15, 2010 10:35 am at 10:35 am |
  13. Mark Peterson

    Yeah, that's America's main problem: We just haven't had enough Bushes in the White House yet.

    November 15, 2010 10:35 am at 10:35 am |
  14. Stewart

    Nobody wants another Bush in the White House. The first one was bad, the second one was worse. Why would we go for a third?

    November 15, 2010 10:36 am at 10:36 am |
  15. mgc

    The united states is not england, we don't have a royal family and don't want one. So no mr. Bush, 16 years of the bush family is more than enough thank you very much.

    November 15, 2010 10:36 am at 10:36 am |
  16. Henry Miller, Libertarian

    Jeb isn't quite as bad as his brother, but we really don't need another narrow-minded, bible-thumping, neo-con in the White House.

    It's time for the neo-cons to Go Away and give the next generation of Republicans their turn. With any luch, that next generation will include people who might actually practice fiscal restraint, people who might actually understand that freedom of religion entails freedom from religion, people who might actually respect the rights of american citizens, and people who might get it that the US isn't the world's cop.

    November 15, 2010 10:37 am at 10:37 am |
  17. Bubba

    This poor country can't take another childish rich fool as "leader." Dubya was the worst president ever.

    November 15, 2010 10:38 am at 10:38 am |
  18. HD 100% ETH

    The Rep. knows their time, very well calculated. Once again, American loves the Republicians. Even on American Constitutions, their party formed first.

    I clamp by my hands and foots to give support for REPUBLICIANS. They make America proud.

    November 15, 2010 10:39 am at 10:39 am |
  19. Nick , California

    I will never vote for another "Bush" again!!!!

    November 15, 2010 10:40 am at 10:40 am |
  20. Cpom Athens GA

    Good lord no.
    Save us from the dynastic reign of power.

    November 15, 2010 10:42 am at 10:42 am |
  21. Marge

    Oh no.....not again. But with the stupid bunch of Americans putting republiclans who created this mess that the Democrats were trying to clean up, back in office who knows. Maybe the might want to make a new law to put George W back in, we see how stupid they are. They just love to be stepped on, stomped on, contribute their hard earned money to the rich and big business they might as well just start direct deposit and hand it all over to start with.

    November 15, 2010 10:42 am at 10:42 am |
  22. Christopher

    Are Americans really that stupid?? Sad to say, I think we are and "W" part duh(I mean two) is not out of the question.

    November 15, 2010 10:43 am at 10:43 am |
  23. carlos

    GOD forbide, hope to never again endure the disaster of the two previous ones......please go away, FOREVER all of you.......I mean the bushes.

    November 15, 2010 10:44 am at 10:44 am |
  24. me me me

    this must be a joke....Bush / Palin 2012 LMFAO..this country couldn't withstand another Bush in the white house...

    November 15, 2010 10:45 am at 10:45 am |
  25. James Taylor

    Your war criminal brother didnt do much for education when you both had the time and the power and now you are saying that you want to improved our 3rd world educational system.

    How about focusing in helping the USA instead of other nations like Israel, Vietnam and stop creating wars and invading other nations. How about giving free medical care to all USA citizens the way is done all over Europe. Yeap they are socialist, but they sure are way ahead of us in education, health care, better life style, safer nations, and more wealth. DId you see how low the $ keeps getting vs the Euro?
    Another Bush or Reps? I DONT THINK SO!!

    November 15, 2010 10:45 am at 10:45 am |
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