Many of the Republican Party’s biggest movers and shakers and deep-pocketed insiders have embarked upon a quiet quest to get former Florida governor Jeb Bush to enter the 2016 presidential race, The Washington Post reported.
This Jan. 14, 2014 file photo shows former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush talking about education reform during a forum in Nashville, Tenn. (Image source: AP/Mark Humphrey, File)
They're hedging on New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie’s presidential prospects since the fallout over the George Washington Bridge traffic scandal and concerned over the rise of Sen. Rand Paul (Ky.); now they consider Bush the GOP’s best chance to win back the White House.
The Post noted that "many if not most of 2012 GOP nominee Mitt Romney’s major donors are reaching out to Bush and his confidants with phone calls, e-mails and invitations to meet, according to interviews with 30 senior Republicans."
One bundler estimated that the “vast majority” of Romney’s top 100 donors would back Bush in a competitive nomination fight, the Post added.
“He’s the most desired candidate out there,” said another bundler, Brian Ballard, who sat on the national finance committees for Romney in 2012 and John McCain in 2008, told the Post. “Everybody that I know is excited about it.”
The Post opines that Bush, 61, would have "serious vulnerabilities as a candidate," saying that after being out of public office for seven years, he's "struggled in some appearances and has had difficulty navigating the Republican Party’s fault lines on immigration and other issues. A Bush candidacy also would test whether the nation still has a hangover from the George W. Bush administration."
Bush declined the Post's request for an interview.
You can read the entire Washington Post story here.