Hallelujah: Jeb Bush’s Son Sees the Light


Former Florida Governor Jeb Bush may not be able to get over the crushing blow to his ego that was the 2016 Republican primaries, but his son recognizes that it’s time to let bygones be bygones for the good of the country. On Saturday, George P. Bush, the Texas land commissioner and victory chair of the Texas GOP, told members of the Texas State Republican Executive Committee that it was time to support Donald Trump.

“From Team Bush, it’s a bitter pill to swallow, but you know what? You get back up and you help the man that won, and you make sure that we stop Hillary Clinton,” the younger Bush said.

This was a reversal for Bush, who said in June that he would not be able to support the candidate. “I, along with others, are not in a position to endorse at this time because of concerns about his rhetoric and his inability to create a campaign that brings people together,” he said back then.

While his comments Saturday did not explicitly come across as an endorsement, they do indicate a willingness to put aside the family’s personal grudge to do what’s best for the conservative movement. That’s impressive, and it demonstrates a maturity in the Texas Republican that’s absent from the rest of the Bush dynasty. You’d think having two presidents and four generations of elected office – to say nothing of untold wealth – would be enough salve for those Trump wounds, but apparently not.

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If Jeb ever plans to run for president again, though, he should take a lesson from his son. The Republican Party of his brother does not exist today, just as the Republican Party of his father did not exist when W. was in office. The party, and the country as a whole, is constantly in flux, and this election is showing us which of its members are willing to surrender to these changes and which aren’t. As long as they view these changes as some manifestation of Trump, they can’t and won’t be on board. Only when they see that the reverse is true – that Trump is a manifestation of the changes – will they once again find themselves comfortable in the GOP.

But see, that’s tough to do when you’re hanging on to a kind of misplaced ownership of the party. The Bushes appear to suffer from the same malady that infects the Clintons, which is blind entitlement. They aren’t sulking because “low energy” was such a devastating accusation that it besmirched the family crest. They’re sulking because they see the Republican Party as their baby.

They’re missing the core reality, which is that it was never theirs and it was always ours.

We’re just taking back our property.

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