OK, you probably already have quite a strong opinion after seeing my title. As a Republican or conservative voter, you either love the idea of Jeb Bush running in 2016, or you HATE the idea. Personally, my feelings are somewhere in between these two extremes. Even still, hear me out.
A new study that has been released by the University of Virginia’s Center for Politics. The authors, Kyle Kondik and Larry J Sabato feel that Bush is actually the front runner right now for the GOP 2016 nomination. Of course, the field is pretty crowded and is changing at this point. Listen to what they say:
“In our first ranking of the very large and unsettled 2016 Republican presidential field back in April of last year, we decided to not even include the name of one of the brightest stars in the GOP universe: Jeb Bush. We just didn’t think, at the time, that the former Florida governor and brother and son of presidents was all that interested in running. But during 2013 and into this new year, we’ve gotten the sense, like many others, that things might be changing. So much so that we now consider Bush the leader of the field if he decides to run.”
One of the biggest reasons for this is the fact that Governor Chris Christie has gotten down a bit. This opens the field for a more moderate, establishment candidate to fill his opening. This was primarily due to his bridge scandal…and now many operatives and insiders are questioning whether Christie is really electable. No doubt that the establishment would consider Bush a great and acceptable choice. Guys like Karl Rove would certainly fight like hell to get him elected.
The other factor is that Tea Party candidates like Ted Cruz, as appealing as they may be to more conservative voters, simply do not have the backing from prominent Republicans to win either the primary or the general election nearly as easily as an establishment candidate. The authors further state that endorsements are HUGE in terms of determining who the nominee will be…and Tea Party candidates will have a very tough time with getting those key endorsements.
Another reason is the fact that the GOP establishment is actually a very crucial voting bloc and they are quite enthusiastic about Bush as a potential candidate. Many of the key leaders in this establishment bloc keep coming back to the ides of Bush. They just don’t seem to find anyone else to be acceptable.
Of course, you might point out the fact that Christie could possibly recover politically. True enough, and the election is still certainly a long time away. However, things right now do not really seem to be in favor of this eventuality. It does seem clear that whatever happens with Bush will rely to some degree on what happens with and to Christie.
The question now remains WILL Bush decide to run. There are a number of reasons why he shouldn’t and or won’t. Not to mention the fact that he still has not made any clear decision on this. Heck, he has not even announced any type of exploratory committee to look into the possibility.
What do YOU think about all this? Do you like the idea of another Bush running in 2016? What do you think the real prospects are for this actually happening? If Jeb ran, do you think he could easily get the nomination? Do you think he would win, especially in a race against Hillary?