February 24th, 2014
03:45 PM ET
9 years ago

Jeb on Bush family name: 'It's an issue'

(CNN) - Jeb Bush understands that as the son and brother of former presidents, his family name may hurt him as much as help him if he decides to run for the White House in 2016.

And the former two-term Florida governor reiterated that he'll make his decision on whether to launch a campaign for the Republican presidential nomination by the end of this year.

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Bush, the featured guest Monday at the Long Island Association's biannual luncheon, a popular stop for former presidents and White House hopefuls, was asked about the recent comments from his mother. Former first lady Barbara Bush told CSPAN that "there's no question in my mind that Jeb is the best-qualified person to run for president, but I hope he won't," adding that "there are other families," who deserve a chance.

"It's an issue for sure," Bush admitted.

Bush told the story of sitting next to a man on a plane who talked about having a Bush and a Clinton and then a Bush in the White House, with the prospect of another Clinton and Bush to come.

Bush said "I get the point. It's something that, if I run, I would have to overcome that. And so will Hillary, by the way. Let's keep the same standards for everybody."

Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has said she'll decide by the end of the year if she makes another bid for the Democratic presidential nomination. Bush said that Clinton's decision would not impact his at all.

As for his timing, Bush said "that's a decision later on," adding once again that he'll decide by the end of the year.

Bush said that he's "old school" in that he feels that "one election should end before the next one starts," referring to this year's midterm elections. Bush said that he thinks a there's a lot that can be done in 2014 and that "I intend to campaign for a lot of candidates for my team, and I hope we can be victorious and I'd rather focus on that right now."

Bush making 2016 calls?

Bush is seen by many political handicappers as someone who could appeal to independents and moderates, as well as Hispanic voters, a demographic where thanks in part to the tough stance by many conservatives on immigration reform, Republicans have much work ahead of them.

"I think we've become a little more harsh than we need to be, so the first step would be to tone it down a bit, chill out," said Bush, adding that "we shouldn't be sending signals that turn them off from the get-go."

CNN Political Editor Paul Steinhauser contributed to this report.

Filed under: 2016 • Hillary Clinton • Jeb Bush
soundoff (37 Responses)
  1. don in albuquerque


    Well I think we all should worship Ronnie. He was the only president who has managed to win a war since WWII. Of course he had to invade a tiny Carib island with an army of 50 and two goats to do so, and a total population that could not fill a football stadium. Makes me so proud!!!!!!

    February 24, 2014 04:47 pm at 4:47 pm |
  2. Dumbas[R]ocks

    Admitting the Bush family name is an issue for any [R] running for office, let alone another Bush, is like admitting the surface of the sun is warm.

    Are [R]s really that stupid? I think so. Why do I say so? Just look at Fair is Fair's comment at the top. Dumber than a bag of bent nails.

    February 24, 2014 04:50 pm at 4:50 pm |
  3. Barb

    I am an independent, so I am hoping someone pops up that is fresh, new ideas and want to save America
    from the people who are trying to bring it down, starting with Pres. Obama. At the present time, I think the
    democrats are in denial about Pres. Obama – that may change!!! The Republicans better get their act together –
    especailly Boehner – he is pitiful. Reid and Pelosi are even more pitiful. They should all be retired and get some
    new blood in there.

    February 24, 2014 04:50 pm at 4:50 pm |
  4. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    Trot out his tan son and boom he's got the hispanics, at least he hopes so.
    That would be a big hell to the no from us Hispanics Wake up!
    He can trot him, canter, or gallop him out, the NO's have it.

    February 24, 2014 05:07 pm at 5:07 pm |
  5. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    The Bush family name is a stigma, not an issue.
    It's like having a big scarlet "S" tattooed on your forehead...and the "S" doesn't stand for super anything.

    February 24, 2014 05:11 pm at 5:11 pm |
  6. rob

    I won't vote for another Bush or Clinton.

    February 24, 2014 05:11 pm at 5:11 pm |
  7. RomneyWho

    Barbara Bush told CSPAN that "there's no question in my mind that Jeb is the best-qualified person to run for president, but I hope he won't," adding that "there are other families," who deserve a chance.

    Double speak, talking out of the side of her neck . . . if she thinks he is the best qualified man for the job, then why suggest, "give the job to some other less qualified family"? Barbara Bush has fallen, let's keep her from getting back up and making more moronic statements! 🙁

    February 24, 2014 05:13 pm at 5:13 pm |
  8. georgex9

    As a Texan I advise you not to let Gov. Perry anywhere near the White House. You should have learned a lesson from the last governor who was selected by the Supreme Court as president. He knew little and was very determined but reckless in the attack and invasion of Iraq thinking it would take a week.
    And, this goes especially for a Texan and another Bush.

    February 24, 2014 05:15 pm at 5:15 pm |
  9. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    Why is this guy and some people acting as if being a Bush would be a big plus ?
    George W and couple of his cronies CANNOT freely travel throughout the free world lest he is arrested for crimes against humanity.
    This is nothing to take lightly people.
    Why are you all trying to act as if you can cover the sun with one finger? It cannot be done!
    George W wasn't even invited to campaign with Romney, nor was he asked, as is customary, to attend the Republican Nationa Convention prior to the 2012 election, so what are we talking about here besides nothing?!
    Being a Bush sucks these days and years, and it will continue to suck until the last person whose 401k was decimated under Duhbya, dies, is buried and turns to dust.

    February 24, 2014 05:17 pm at 5:17 pm |
  10. Marie MD

    @it must be said, neither did Obama or Hillary but his brother has the blood of thousands in his hands.
    @malory, I agree 100% with you.

    February 24, 2014 05:19 pm at 5:19 pm |
  11. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    ...You got people in their freakin' 70s who CANNOT retire thanks to George W. Bush.
    Jeb needs to stfu and sit down.

    February 24, 2014 05:20 pm at 5:20 pm |
  12. smith

    @Malory- The 9/11 hijackers entered the country and began training under Clinton`s watch.

    February 24, 2014 05:20 pm at 5:20 pm |
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