MANCHESTER, N.H. – As Iowa prepared to caucus on Monday evening, Republican presidential candidate Gov. Jeb Bush was over a thousand miles away making his case to voters in the Granite State.
Bush said that it looks like Iowa will choose a candidate who is “insulting his way to the presidency.”
Without naming Sens. Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio, he referenced the “other” candidates leading the polls in Iowa as “backbenchers” who can “give a good speech.”
Bush told voters what he called “the Florida story:” that as governor, he cut taxes every year, made it possible to fire underperforming state employees and balanced the state’s budget.
Bush said that “I’m part of the establishment” because “Barbara Bush is my mom,” but he called himself the candidate who can “reform and disrupt” Washington.
Bush was introduced at the town hall by his former rival Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.).
“So this is what a crowd looks like,” Graham joked.
Graham, who has endorsed Bush, said that after his own campaign “didn’t work out,” he sought a candidate for commander in chief capable of “keeping us safe.”
Bush said that Graham advised him on foreign policy during his own presidential campaign.
Bush’s fellow governors who remain in the race – Gov. John Kasich (R-Ohio) and Gov. Chris Christie (R-N.J.) – also chose to forgo remaining in Iowa for the caucus.
At a town hall in Bow, N.H., on Sunday evening, Kasich said that he chose to campaign in New Hampshire because residents of the Granite State are “the best screeners on the nation” for who should be president.