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- suspended campaign Feb. 20, 2016 -   




visits to 2ndQ '15
web site grab for Jeb Bush's Ready to Rise PAC

web site grab for Jeb Bush emails

Jeb 2016, Inc.

jebbush  |  @Jeb Bush

...announced candidacy on June 15, 2015.
Right to Rise PAC
...leadership PAC launched Jan. 6, 2015. 

Jeb Bush Emails

...Feb. 10, 2015


web site grab for Millennials for Bush PAC web site grab for Jeb News 2016 by Spalding Group

Right to Rise USA

...super PAC launched Jan. 6, 2015. FEC
Right to Rise Policy Solutions, Inc.

...501(c)(4) formed Feb. 2, 2015. (+)
Millennials for Jeb PAC
Jeb News 2016 by Spalding Group


web site grab for End Jeb 2016

Constitutional Rights PAC

Conventional Wisdom

- Ability to line up establishment support and fundraising prowess.
- Record as governor plus business experience.
- Ability to appeal to the Hispanic community; he speaks Spanish and his wife is from Mexico.
- Interest in policy and ideas. (>
- Extensive work on education reform.
- Bush fatigue and concerns about a Bush dynasty.
- Has not held office since Jan. 1, 2007.
- Difficulty appealing to grassroots conservatives who see him as another establishment candidate.
- Positions on immigration reform and Common Core.
- Possible complications with his business dealings.

Notes, Coverage and Speeches

photo of Jeb Bush signing books at CPAC 2013
March 15, 2013 - Book signing at CPAC.
Feb. 27, 2015 - At CPAC.
March 7, 2015 - Iowa Ag Summit.

- "A U.S. Defense Policy for the 21st Century," The Citadel, Charleston, SC, Nov. 18, 2015.
- "Jeb Can Fix It," Tampa Garden Club, Tampa, FL, Nov. 2, 2015.
- Economic policy speech, Morris & Associates, Garner, NC, Sept. 9, 2015.
- Foreign policy speech (addressing radical Islamic extremism), Ronald Reagan Presidential Library, Simi Valley, CA, Aug. 11, 2015.
- Announcement speech, Miami Dade College - Kendall Campus, Miami, FL, June 15, 2015.
- Liberty University Commencement Address, Williams Stadium, Lynchburg, VA, May 9, 2015.
- Speech to the Chicago Council on Global Affairs, Chicago, IL, Feb. 18, 2015.
- Speech to the Detroit Economic Club, Detroit, MI, Feb. 4, 2015.
- Speech at CPAC's Ronald Reagan Dinner, National Harbor, MD, Mar. 15, 2013.

2016 - Jeb Bush ended 2016 in a very different position than he had been a year earlier.  Donald Trump had thoroughly tarred him with the "low energy" label, and his campaign couldn't seem to adjust to the unexpected frontrunner.  Additionally some voters simply were not able to "get over" the prospect of another Bush as president.  Bush focused on New Hampshire, and he came across as very solid, if not flashy in his events there.  He deemed his fourth place finish (11-percent) in the Feb. 9 primary enough to continue, and in South Carolina he had what appeared to be a very solid organization.  However, a fourth place showing in the Feb. 20 primary (7.8 percent of the vote) prompted him to end his campaign.

- Former Gov. Jeb Bush announced his candidacy on June 15 in Miami, Florida, six months after he said he would "actively explore the possibility" of running.  Bush's pre-campaign vehicle was the Right to Rise PAC. which he launched on Jan. 6 "to support candidates who share our optimistic, conservative, positive vision for helping every American get ahead." 
[A bit of the money raised actually did go to help Republican candidates and party committees (+)].  A Right to Rise Super PAC was also formed.  On Jan. 7. Bush kicked off an aggressive fundraising effort, holding his first fundraiser at the home of former Goldman Sachs executive Charles Davis in the Belle Haven neighborhood of Greenwich, CT.  Bush spokeswoman Kristy Campbell denied a Jan. 9 Bloomberg Politics report that Bush's allies aim to raise $100 million in the first quarter of 2015, but Bush's early entry and intense fundraising seemed intended to dissuade other candidates from getting in the race. 

Bush also began to outline his policy views.  In a Feb. 4 speech to the Detroit Economic Club Bush said
, in prepared remarks (+), that he plans to set out "a mix of smart policies and reforms to tap our resources and capacity to innovate, whether in energy, manufacturing, health care or technology."  "Let's deliver real conservative success," Bush declared.  On Feb. 18, speaking to the Chicago Council on Global Affairs, Bush discussed foreign policy.  He talked about his own international experience, and declared, "I'm my own man and my views are shaped by my own thinking and my own experiences."  Bush said, "Under this administration we are inconsistent and indecisive. We have lost the trust and confidence of our friends. We definitely no longer inspire fear in our enemies."  Concluding his remarks, Bush said, "Nothing and no one can replace strong American leadership."  Bush also followed through on his earlier pledge to post emails from his governorship, putting them up on Feb. 10 "in the spirit of transparency."

Meanwhile, however, other candidates were not dissuaded from entering the race, and the Bush as frontrunner scenario dissipated.  Part of the problem was wariness of a Bush dynasty.  Another part of it was suspicion among conservatives.  For example a
n entity called Constitutional Rights PAC launched End Jeb 2016, terming Bush "a dyed-in-the-wool establishment Republican and an advocate of big government." Their petition stated, "He supports amnesty, increased taxation, and wants D.C. bureaucrats in every public school classroom across the country." ForAmerica, chaired by L. Brent Bozell, has been a persisent critic, for example issuing a video on Feb. 19 labeling Bush "unelectable (+)." Bush did get himself into a bit of a pickle in May when he told Fox News' Megyn Kelly in an interview that he would have authorized the invasion of Iraq in 2003, and then spent subsequent days clarifying what he meant. 

About a week before his June 15 announcement there was a bit of a shakeup in the Bush team, followed by headlines such as "How Jeb Bush's campaign ran off course before it even began" (Washington Post) and "A Shaky Start Compels Bush To Refine Tone" (New York Times).
  Bush also did a trip to Germany, Poland and Estonia just prior to his June 15 announcement.  Bush has continued his transparency theme, releasing 33 years of tax returns on June 30 (+).

On July 9, 2015 Bush's Right to Rise USA super PAC announced it had indeed raised $100 million; or, to be specific "over $103,000,000."  Further, it reported it had over $98,000,000 in cash on hand.  Meanwhile Bush has been rolling out policies emphasizing his goal of achieving a 4-percent growth rate.  For example, on Sept. 9
at Morris & Associates in Garner, NC he delivered an economic policy address focused on "fixing our broken tax code (+)."  On Sept. 29 he outlined his energy plan (+) at Rice Energy Company in Canonsburg, PA, emphasizing cheaper energy; environmental and progressive groups roundly condemned the plan, however.  On Oct. 13 Bush rolled out "The Conservative Plan for 21st Century Health," setting out three objectives: promoting innovation, lowering costs and returning power to the states (+). 

There has been a fair bit of chatter about Bush's failure to lock up establishment support.  The campaign sought to dispel that notion in an Oct. 15 memo from campaign manager Diaz; Diaz pointed out the campaign's strength in areas ranging from fundraising to the ground game to endorsements
(+).  However, on Oct. 23 Bloomberg Politics reported the campaign is making across the board pay cuts and cutting other expenses (>).

web site grab for Foundation for Excellence in Education web site grab for Foundation for Florida's Future web site grab for Jeb Bush page at Washington Speakers Bureau web site grab for Jeb Bush's Ready to Rise super PAC

Foundation for Excellence in Education
former Gov. Jeb Bush, chairman  through Dec. 31, 2014
ExcelinEd  |  @excelined
Foundation for Florida's Future
former Gov. Jeb Bush, chairman through Dec. 31, 2014
AFloridaPromise  |  @afloridapromise
Washington Speakers Bureau

[page removed Dec. 2014]
Right to Rise Super PAC
[holder page]

2014 - After keeping a relatively low profile for much of the year, former Gov. Jeb Bush started making a lot of news in Dec. 2014.  A Dec. 4 report from Real Clear Politics had "Bush Trying to Line Up Staff in New Hampshire."  On Dec. 14, in a interview with WPLG-TV in Miami, Bush said he would release 250,000 emails from his time as governor, and that he is working on an e-book.  On Dec.15 he delivered the winter commencement address to graduates at the University of South Carolina.  On Dec. 16 Bush announced via Facebook and Twitter, "I have decided to actively explore the possibility of running for President of the United States."  Specifically, Bush wrote that in January he will establish a leadership PAC "to help me facilitate conversations with citizens across America to discuss the most critical challenges facing our exceptional nation. The PAC’s purpose will be to support leaders, ideas and policies that will expand opportunity and prosperity for all Americans."  Bush is signalling that if he runs his will not be an ordinary campaign; he says he would offer "no more Kindergarten attack politics" but rather "a substantive campaign that will present the fresh conservative ideas and meaningful reforms." (+)

During the midterm elections Bush was not overly active; he appeared in a handful of rallies,
held some fundraisers, and cut a few ads; he did not, for example, have a leadership PAC or make any appearances in Iowa or New Hampshire. 

Bush has not backed away from positions which may which may pose problems if he does run for president.  He has continued to weigh in on education through his Foundation for Excellence in Education, including support of Common Core.  Also troubling to many conservatives is Bush's position on illegal immigration.  For example during an event at the George Bush Presidential Library and Museum on April 6, 2014,he stated in part, "Yes, they broke the law, but it’s not a felony. It’s an act of love. It’s an act of commitment to your family."  In response to President Obama's executive action, Bush put up a facebook post that stated in part, "President Obama's ill-advised unilateral action on illegal immigration undermines all efforts to forge a permanent solution to this crisis. Action must come in the form of bipartisan comprehensive reform passed through Congress."  Positions such as these do not sit well with conservatives.  Phyllis Schlafly, in a Nov. 13 interview with TownHall.com, stated, "We don't want the candidate who is picked by the elitists, the globalists, the internationalists, the RINOs and I can tell you their number one choice is Jeb Bush."  Donald Trump tweeted (all caps), "The last thing this country needs is another Bush!"
  In a general election, such attacks from hardline conservatives could actually help Bush among independent voters, but if he runs he must first get through the primaries.

If Bush were to run, and were to outmatch his conservative critics, he could face other problems in the general election.  First there is the dynasty concern.  Critics have also raised questions about Bush's business dealings, Democrats would likely try to hit him on that much as they did with Romney in 2012.  However, Bush moved to clear some of his business ties as the year drew to a close; The Washington Post reported on Dec. 31 that Bush had resigned from corporate boards and the two foundations he chaired.  (Bush still is reviewing his own businesses, Jeb Bush & Associates).

2013 - In March former Gov. Bush made a splash with Immigration Wars: Forging an American Solution (Threshold Editions), which he co-authored with Clint Bolick.  The book presents a six-point strategy to achieve immigration reform; it does not go so far as advocating citizenship for those who arrived in the country illegally.  On March 15, Bush delivered the keynote address at CPAC's Ronald Reagan Dinner, outlining for the conservative audience how to get the Republican party "in the front again."  He did not make much news during the rest of 2013, however.  Bush said several times during the year that he is defering consideration of a possible 2016 bid until the proper time.  He could likely count on some establishment support, but some activists view him as a moderate and the prospect of a third Bush in the White House might be too much for others.  His mother Barbara Bush said on NBC's Today show in April that, "He's by far the best qualified man."  She then added, "There are other people out there that are very qualified and we've had enough Bushes.”  Bush, who finished his two terms as governor in Jan. 2007, is founder and chairman of the board of the Foundation for Excellence in Education, a 501(c)(3) which seeks "to build an American education system that equips every child to achieve his or her God-given potential."

...examples of 2014 activity...
invitation for Jeb Bush event for Gov. Nikki Haley graphic for Jeb Bush event for Adam Putnam
screen grab from jeb bush ad 1 screen grab from jeb bush ad 2
screen grab from jeb bush ad 3 screen grab from jeb bush ad 4

 cover of Jeb Bush's book Immigration Wars  cover of S.V. Date's book on Jeb Bush
Jeb Bush and Clint Bolick.  March 2013.  IMMIGRATION WARS: Forging an American Solution.  New York:
Threshold Editions [Simon & Schuster imprint].
"In the first book to offer a practical, nonpartisan approach, Bush and Bolick propose a compelling six-point strategy for reworking our policies that begins with erasing all existing, outdated immigration structures and starting over. From there, Immigration Wars details their plan for advancing the national goals that immigration policy is supposed to achieve:"

S.V. Dáte.  Feb. 15, 2007.  JEB: America's Next Bush.  New York: Penguin Group. 1, 2, +
"...an independent, unauthorized biography of his Florida tenure written by the guy who had become the biggest journalistic thorn in his side..."

Early Articles
Alec McGillis.  "The Education of Jeb Bush."  The New Yorker.  Jan. 26, 2015.
Joshua Green.  "Jeb Bush Has a Mitt Romney Problem."  Bloomberg.  Dec. 11, 2014.
Matthew Cooper.  "Can Jeb Bush Win the Presidency?"  Newsweek.  June 6, 2014.
Philip Rucker and Robert Costa.  "Influential Republicans working to Draft Jeb Bush into 2016 presidential race."  Washington Post.  March 29, 2014.

American Bridge 21st Century PAC: Jeb Bush.

  this page last revised March 16, 2016