Barbara Bush: No More Bushes

The always outspoken matriarch of the Bush clan was pretty clear this morning when asked about the possibility that he son Jeb may run in 2016:

Former first lady Barbara Bush said her son George W. Bush should be the last in the family line of presidents, rejecting the idea of a White House run for her other son, Jeb Bush.

“There are other people out there that are very qualified and we’ve had enough Bushes,” she told TODAY’s Matt Lauer on Thursday from inside her son’s presidential library.

When asked whether she expects Jeb Bush, the former Florida governor, to make a presidential run, Mrs. Bush said there are many worthy candidates.

“It’s a great country. There are a lot of great families and it’s not just four families,” she said.

“He’s the most qualified, but I don’t think he’ll run.”

To some degree, she has a point. From 1976 through 2004, there wasn’t a single Presidential election where we didn’t have a Bush, Clinton, or Dole on the ballot. Now we’re talking about the possibility of another Clinton and another Bush on the ballot in 2016. Dynastic politics like this is somewhat distasteful and, in the end, not entirely healthy for the political culture.

As for Jeb himself, I’d say that he’s still mulling it over but that it’s probably more likely he’ll run this time than it ever has been in the past. How the GOP will receive him if he does run? That will be interesting to watch.

FILED UNDER: Campaign 2016, Quick Takes, US Politics,
Doug Mataconis
About Doug Mataconis
Doug holds a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May 2010. Before joining OTB, he wrote at Below The BeltwayThe Liberty Papers, and United Liberty Follow Doug on Twitter | Facebook

Comments

  1. Jenos Idanian #13 says:

    If you drop Dole, you still get 1980-2004, as Dole was only on the ballot in 1976 and 1996. And the way Obama ran against Bush at least as much as he ran against McCain and Romney, you could argue for 1980-2012 for the Bush/Clinton streak.

  2. john personna says:

    I’d say she is absolutely right, and that dynastic politics are absolutely distasteful.

    Are you wary to say that because it’s a money thing?

    Young Huntsman could not raise the money of a young GWB, because … dynasty.

  3. PJ says:

    @Doug Mataconis:

    From 1976 through 2004, there wasn’t a single Presidential election where we didn’t have a Bush, Clinton, or Dole on the ballot.

    Get a D and R combo of a VP serving two terms and then serving as president for two terms, and you would get two names on the ticket for 8 straight elections.

    Ponder the Supreme Court in 2000 having 5 D and 4 R, and Gore winning reelection in 2004. Then from 1980 through 2004, there would have been either a Bush or a Gore on the ticket.

    The main issue about dynasties aren’t the names on the ticket.

  4. James Joyner says:

    @PJ: I agree that the number of elections thing is silly, since GHW Bush accounts for four cycles alone and in a way that was hardly dynastic. Hell, Richard Nixon was on the ballot five times and he came from nothing. The problem is that Bush’s son followed him so quickly and one of his other sons is considered a frontrunner if he wants it. And we now have Clinton’s wife in the mix.

  5. edmondo says:

    Barbara Bush speaks for all of America.

  6. gVOR08 says:

    No more Bushes for prez. Absolutely agree with Barbara Bush. First time I’ve ever had to say that, and I suspect the last.

  7. Caj says:

    Thank God for that! We’ve had two that’s more than enough. Although George senior wasn’t as dim or as easily led as George junior. What makes anyone think Jeb bush would be any better? Anymore bushes and we could have a forest fire!! Enough of them. Time to move on.

  8. Nikki says:

    Although George senior wasn’t as dim or as easily led as George junior.

    That was a feature, not a bug.

  9. Moosebreath says:

    Read her lips, No New Bushes!