Barbara Bush’s Surprising Take on a Jeb Presidential Run

Jan 16, 2014 4:47pm

Feisty former First Lady Barbara Bush isn’t known for sugar coating her feelings — especially when it comes to her son’s future political ambitions.

Bush said in a recent interview for C-SPAN’s “First Ladies” series that it’s “silly” to think that America can’t find other people who aren’t named Clinton, Kennedy or Bush to run for public office.

“I refuse to accept that this great country isn’t raising other wonderful people,” she said in the interview.

She added that she hopes her son Jeb, the former governor of Florida, will take a pass on a White House bid in 2016 “because I think he’ll get all my enemies, all his brother’s.”

“If we can’t find more than two or three families to run for high office, that’s silly, because there are great governors and great eligible people to run,” the 88-year-old wife of former President George H.W. Bush said. “I think that the Kennedys, Clintons, Bushes — there are just more families than that.”

Mrs. Bush was doubling down on her comments from last April, when she told NBC’s Matt Lauer, “There are other people out there that are very qualified and we’ve had enough Bushes.”

But it turns out there’s a bit of a family feud brewing within the Bush clan about Jeb’s next political move.

His father, a former president, and brother, also a former president, have both encouraged Jeb to enter the race.

“I think we’ve got a split ballot amongst the Bush senior family,” Jeb Bush told ABC News’ Jonathan Karl in an interview last June. “Pretty sure that’s the case.”

The matriarch of the Bush family, however, appears to be standing her ground.

“There are a lot of ways to serve, and being president is not the only one.” Mrs. Bush told C-SPAN. “I would hope that someone else would run — although there’s no question in my mind that Jeb is the best qualified person to run for president — but I hope he won’t.”

 

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