I’ve always liked Jeb Bush. He was a great governor of Florida, and would likely make a very good president. He might still have been a contender some day if he hadn’t put his foot in his mouth in the precise fashion he did over the weekend, embracing the stupid liberal talking point that Ronaldus Magnus couldn’t win the Republican nomination today. Not only that, he complains, Poppy Bush couldn’t do it either. Let’s see—this is the same party that, since Reagan, has nominated two Bushes, Bob Dole, John McCain, and now, Mitt Romney. Seriously, Jeb? Did Norm Ornstein slip a mickey into your drink or something?
Of course, among the Bushoisie, as I call it, there was always lingering resentment that Reagan bested their best man in 1980, delaying the Bush regency for a full eight years. Then there are Bushies who, when they unceremoniously turfed out all the Reagan appointees as fast as they could in 1989, had the attitude that “we don’t have ideologies—we have mortgages” (an actual quote).
There’s a certain amount of ingratitude here. Reagan made the Bushes on the presidential level. But for Reagan, neither George Bush would likely have made it to the Oval Office. That’s probably a source of resentment for a justly prideful family. And it underscores how the selection of George H.W. Bush as the running mate in 1980 was arguably Reagan’s biggest political mistake.
UPDATE: Oops! I see Paul beat me to this story. But there’s no reason not to pile on this Bush blunder.