Jeb Bush

Likely GOP Nominee Jeb Bush Praises Common Core, Defends Iraq War, Worships Cops

Not a libertarian, not a conservative, not exciting... why him?


Gage Skidmore

Megyn Kelly interviewed former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush on her program Monday night. For a spectacularly awful 30 minutes, the Republican presidential nominee proceeded to defend virtually every non-libertarian position a GOP candidate could conceivably hold.

Most notably, he expressed vociferous support for his brother's Iraq War—not just in its original context, but even with the benefit of hindsight. He also defended Common Core, the controversial national education standards for math and English, because American children are falling behind their international competitors and our schools need standards—even though those standards are being imposed on the states via federal pressure and are loathed by adherents of every ideology, from Tea Party activists to teachers unions.

But Bush didn't stop there! He also attacked the Obama administration for capitulating to Iran and reaching out to Cuba. Oh, and he praised law enforcement, said the Baltimore police force was doing a great job, and denied that police brutality is a systemic problem.

Did I mention that this man is likely to become the Republican Party's 2016 presidential nominee?

Look, I'm a cynical libertarian. I know that we should always assume the worst outcome in every election. I know that people who enjoy exercising power over others are the kind of people who win national office. I get it. But… seriously? Is this the best Republicans can do?

I was struck by the fact that many of his positions are not merely antithetical to libertarianism, but also to conservatism. Many conservative-leaning Republicans have some questions about whether endless interventionism really makes America safer, and virtually all of them oppose Common Core.

Would-be Republican candidates should not take libertarian votes for granted to this extent and get away with it. Even Mitt Romney, the 2012 candidate, made occasional paeans to libertarianism. Semi-libertarian presidential candidate Rand Paul evidently feels the need to moderate his positions to appeal to the Republican base; why does Bush not feel obligated to do the same thing, but in reverse?

Take almost any generic Republican—take Texas Gov. Rick Perry, the closest one can get to a Bush clone outside the literal Bush family—and you will at least find some pandering to libertarianism. I would assert that Perry, by no means a libertarian (and not actually a candidate), is more libertarian than Bush, as evidenced by this interview.

Bush's fearless defense of government intervention into so many aspects of foreign and domestic policy should be vexing, not just to libertarians, but for anyone who aspires to cast a ballot for a candidate other than Hillary Clinton.

NEXT: Mitch McConnell Still Thinks the NSA Should Keep Its Haystack, Because There Must Be a Needle in There Somewhere

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  1. Hey, he likes open borders.

    1. Well, he is the Burrito Bush, you know.

    2. That makes Jeb officially more libertarian than UKIP!

    3. No he doesn’t. He just wants more rational policies than are present today, and the spastics comprising the opposition to such a move condemn it as ‘open borders’.

    4. Just so his wife won’t get caught smuggling again.

    5. “…he likes open borders.”

      ‘Likes’ isn’t strong enough, loves would be more accurate. On the subject of open borders Jeb Bush is libertarianus maximus.

  2. Likely GOP nominee? Really?

    I don’t think so. There’s only so much money in the Clinton foundation, and it’s not enough.

    Has he even declared yet? His polling numbers are going to look like Christie’s before this thing really heats up. He’d do better running as a Dem.

    1. Has he even declared yet? His polling numbers are going to look like Christie’s before this thing really heats up. He’d do better running as a Dem.

      Yeah…somebody should have told Clan Bush that you need to run the slightly more articulate idiot son…first.

      1. Dubyah was just looking for the axis of evil, he meant well.

      2. That was always the plan. I think Jeb hopes/thinks the old family connections can put him over the top, and who doesn’t love compassionate conservatism? Just look at all the good it accomplished during Bush II. He’s certainly got Brooks’ endorsement.

        1. You sure his pants crease is sharp enough?

    2. I don’t think Bush is the likely nominee. Go lurk in the comments section of National Review or American Spectator. They hate his guts.

      1. Highly unlikely. Unless they use all of that money to pay voters directly for votes, he’s an obvious bust.

    3. There’s only so much money in the Clinton foundation, and it’s not enough.

      Exactly. Bush is the Republican the Democrats hope the GOP nominates. After him, they’ll settle for Rubio.

      Not a principle or argument to take to the electorate about why they should vote for him. Pretty much a surefire popularity contest.

    4. Still, he could take the nomination by being acceptable to a plurality of their voters & backers, even if he’s hardly anybody’s 1st choice, or maybe even 2nd. That’s how the big beers operate. Budweiser et al. don’t try to be anybody’s favorite beer, they just try to be acceptable enough that they’ll be stocked by almost everybody who sells beer. If there’s a few of you at a table, you may agree on a pitcher of Bud or Miller where you wouldn’t on any other brand.

    5. Never underestimate the Clinton Foundation. Arkansas Mob evil is more powerful than you realize.

    6. Agreed. “Wouldn’t be prudent!”

  3. why does Bush not feel obligated to do the same thing, but in reverse?

    Because Jeb does not want to be president and knows he has zero chance of being president. He’s in this for one reason only, to guarantee that Hillary is elected. But apparently he’s not smart enough to pretend to be a conservative until the GOP nomination is over. He’s saying things that are pissing off practically everyone on the right, conservatives and libertarians included. Is that the way to get a GOP nomination? Well, since that requires getting votes, the answer is no.

    1. “pissing off practically everyone on the right, conservatives and libertarians included.”

      Can we stop calling libertarians the right?

      1. Okay, how about “pissing off practically every element in the GOP coalition, conservatives and some libertarians included.”


      2. I’ve never been able to picture the left/right dichotomy. If we made a scale and the left side stood for total government wouldn’t the right side be anarchy?

        1. Well, if that was the scale, yes. But that’s not what it is. It’s more complex than that and it’s difficult to pigeon hole some movements, especially when some don’t like to think their ‘side’ has anything to do with Stalin, Hitler, etc., and argue those leaders actually belonged in the other side.

        2. Nah, on the left are love, compassion, empathy, etc. On the right are greed, hate, evil, etc.

  4. Look, I’m a cynical libertarian. I know that we should always assume the worst outcome in every election. I know that people who enjoy exercising power over others are the kind of people who win national office. I get it. But? seriously? Is this the best Republicans can do?

    You’re just not cynical enough, Robby. Spend enough time under the millstone of American electoral politics, and eventually you’ll shrug off even the eventual Hitler-vs-Stalin presidential race. Unless you’re a lost cause of naive optimism like ProLib. But I don’t think you are.

    Stick with us. We’ll get you there.

    1. Edgy hipster is edgy.

    2. Isn’t this becoming more like Mao Vs. Stalin?

  5. And that’s why you don’t drift over speed bumps

    For an extra treat, keep an eye on the guy in the blue shirt who is walking by

    Any guesses as to the country?

    1. The guy in the blue shirt seems to know the driver.

    2. Brazil? Because that looks exactly like something that would happen there.

    3. From the music I’m guessing the speed bump was the boss level for that car.

    4. More off-topic car stuff:…..b96_02.jpg

    5. Australia? Australian hoons love them some cars.

    6. “Any guesses as to the country?”

      Rio, Russia

      1. Too many blacks for Russia.

    7. There’s a blurred out caption in the upper left.

  6. Hey, somebody’s got to lose to Shrill! It’s his turn!

  7. You know it’s bad when people would vote for Rick Perry over you.

    (Full disclosure: I think Perry can be convinced that cannabis is okay according to the Christian bible)

    1. “(Full disclosure: I think Perry can be convinced that cannabis is okay according to the Christian bible)”
      Hmmm. Bar height: Not an issue.

    2. Perry’s got a lot of catching up to do to the Cruz missile. Not to mention ol’ Teddy boy already said he’d leave MJ policy up to the states.

  8. Ladies and gentlemen, behold, the future of America!

    Hillary voters

    1. I have never been so grateful that my AdobeX was out of date.

      1. You could download and install Gimp in like 5 min.

  9. Did I mention that this man is likely to become the Republican Party’s 2016 presidential nominee?

    No, but now that you have you reveal yourself as being extremely presumption and having political forecasting skills possibly as bad as Welch’s.

  10. If the Democratic party hadn’t gone batshit socialist insane over the past two decades, Jeb would have made for one fine blue dog democrat candidate. The fact that he is considered by many to be “conservative” or “republican” is a sad commentary on just how far the political spectrum has shifted statist over the years. However, the same thing could be said about his father, his brother, Romney, McCain, Dole, Boehner, McConnell, etc… It’s R and D Progressivism all the way down, pick your poison.

    1. Burrito Bush is a neocon proggie through and through. The only difference between him and Hill is that Hill has a bigger penis… err, I mean vagina! No, not a bigger vagina, cankles, really bigger cankles!

  11. When I saw that picture, my very first thought was “It’s President McChimp the 2nd!”

    1. Let’s see if he can point out one of them Koreas on a world map.

      1. Or the 57th state!
        Ooops! Wrong dofus!

        1. That’s it! the 57th state! It’s Iran, one of them Koreas, and the 57th state. That’s the axis of evil!

  12. You guys are so pro-Bush it’s shameful.


    1. Well, what exactly did you expect out of a bunch of Koch funded Republicans?

  13. Worships Cops

    J. Christian Adams’s midget cock just dribbled happy pellets.

    Nothing makes J. Christian Adams’s mighty little spunk chub swell like a toe on steroids than American citizens collectively strapped to the hood of a beastly ‘Stang with law enforcement balls deep in their servile asses. God fucking Bless the goddamn United States of Law’n Order, whores!

    1. Pure beauty. Hot damn you really need to be National Poet or something.

      1. I don’t know if a position like that exists but it probably does and if we’re going to have it we might as well be entertained.

      2. He’ll have to move to Greenwich Village first, grow a neck beard, dress strangely and wear dark glasses all day long… and eat more hashish. Only then can he be a national poet.

        Maybe international poet is better, I’m not sure what the rules are for that.

        1. Something tells me AC eats plenty of hashish as it is. I could be wrong.

          1. That’s why I said MORE hasish.

            1. Haha I missed that

              1. At least I spelled it right the first time…

        2. Whatever the rules are, if they don’t involve ripping the title from the still warm wreckage that is the corpse of your predecessor after a Thunderdome-style cage match to the death then its all just a bunch of bullshit anyway.

          The above is the only way to make being an ‘official’ poet socially acceptable.

      3. Everyone here is a word-rumbling poet of some sort. I’m just one angle on the spouting Myriagon. Appreciation for the kind express tho, bro.

        1. Look! He admits to being a many-angled one.

  14. “Most notably, he expressed vociferous support for his brother’s Iraq War?not just in its original context, but even with the benefit of hindsight.”

    For the record, explanation (link) of the law and policy, fact basis for Operation Iraqi Freedom.

  15. Heh, heh, I just saw the most interesting religion-related article. Don’t worry, though, I won’t share it right away.


  16. Why would he question government? It’s been good to him, after all.

    1. Well done, SusanM.

  17. It’s like Jeb is trying to alienate as many voters without being outright offensive.

    Are we sure this is the smart Bush brother?

    1. It’s the dumb one. George upset Ann Richards and got elected Preside t twice. He has more political accumN in his big toe than Jeb has. Jeb is a fucking moron

      1. It doesn’t look like there is any separation between George and Jeb at all. Same donors, same policies, same advisors……..if you liked Bush, you’ll like Bush.

    2. The Republicans think they can split the Hispanic vote with Jeb Bush. There, I said it!

  18. “Did I mention that this man is likely to become the Republican Party’s 2016 presidential nominee?”

    And yet you provide not one shred of evidence.

  19. “Likely nominee”?

    Rather defeatist of you, isn’t it?


    1. If at any point it ever looks as if someone like Rand Paul might actually have a shot to win, rest assured that Rico Soave, aka Dave Weigel the Third, will do everything in his power to torpedo him.

      Soave is just another poorly-disguised faker.

  20. Someday, I hope I’m in the audience when some asshole like Jeb or Lindsey or Hillary or BHO says something really egregiously stupid. I’ll make sure I’m near some newsie’s microphone, and yell out “Oh, give us a break you, you brain-dead, power-grubbing fucking ignoramus!”


    1. Better to stick with a shorter one – “fuck off, slaver” would work.

  21. Presidential candidate Jeb Bush is so radically different from Gov. Bush that I expect some kids and a dog to drive up in an oddly painted van, grab him, and rip his mask off.

    1. Ever notice how the mask always goes one way? No journalist or politician is ever revealed to be a secret conservative or libertarian. Nope they always turn out to be authoritarian shit bags.

      1. It would be nice to see a secret libertarian man win. Behold, I have come to free you fools!

  22. Yes, please don’t lump libertarians in with the right. We are neither right or left. While some tenets are SUPPOSEDLY held by either side, in practice both left and right have consistently betrayed every single ideal libertarians hold dear. For example, the left is atrocious on civil liberties and the right no longer even bothers paying lip service to small government. Left or right, they are statists. I have nothing in common with statists.

    1. Ugh! This was supposed to be a comment to Corning’s comment above. Time for another coffee, it seems.

    2. It’s still a damn good comment. The Left and the Right have far more in common with each other than I have with either.

  23. But? seriously? Is this the best Republicans can do?


    1. Realistically unless you want to go Huckabee or Christie Jeb is by far the worst they can do which also makes him a high probability choice for the terminally stupid republican base.

  24. why him?

    Because Americans in general, and Republicans in particular, want a middle-of-the-road statist.

  25. And if Bush loses, it will be the libertarians’ fault of course. It’s always our fault when Republicans lose. It’s never the fact that their candidates are mediocre nonentities who can’t get their own voters to the polls. No, it’s those darn crazy libertarians wasting their votes!

  26. I’m telling ya, the only thing standing between us and a “unity” slate is that Hillary and Jeb won’t be able to agree on who plays second fiddle.

  27. It didn’t help that his father took credit for the fall of the Iron Curtain.

    A Bush is perpetually the go-to as the moderate among relative extremists, & as the one next in line.

    They’re around for the same reason Dairy Queen has only 1 flavor of ice cream. I couldn’t believe that when I 1st went to one of them, thought maybe they were just temporarily out of chocolate, pistachio, strawberry, peach, whatever, that you could get at all the other joints (chain or otherwise) known for ice cream. Even soft-serve-only vendors, even from trucks, had a choice of vanilla, chocolate, & often a rotating 3rd flavor. Plus, I don’t think Dairy Queen even claimed their stuff was ice cream, rather just a vanillin-flavored stuff they called “DQ”, like some engrg. abbr., while other soft-serves called their stuff ice cream or frozen custard. Nobody patronized them for their ice cream plain, it had to be topped w something, preferably a mishmosh of several somethings. They relied entirely on toppings for the variety, but on that basis alone they spread around the country.

  28. Very much the worst of the Bush clan. If the GOP puts him up, I won’t even vote even though it will mean the likes of Hillary getting in the White House. The GOP has been putting up the worst possible candidates for years now, candidates who get voted for only because the other guy is so much worse. One would think they would have learned after the last two elections that that is not a winning strategy anymore.

    1. That’s because there is a list and you you are either on it or not, and you get your chance when its your turn. Bush SR. did a lot of behind the scene work to get his boys on the list, and damn it, its Jeb’s turn! Who cares if the world burns or Hillary wins? At this point, I’m old enough to say, “fuck it, let it burn!”

  29. “Most notably, he expressed vociferous support for his brother’s Iraq War?not just in its original context, but even with the benefit of hindsight.”

    With the benefit of hindsight I have yet to hear a Kurd say they regret what happened.

  30. The Clintons and the Bushs. Two dynasties equally adept and hell bent on the total ruination of America. The Republic is doomed.

  31. I suppose he’ll appeal to neo-cons.

  32. Is this what Reason now espouses? Whining that we aren’t getting pandered to……seriously? Grow a sack!

  33. I’d file Jeb under big gubmit lovin prog commie

  34. Jeb is a decent sort but a Bush does not have a chance to be elected.

  35. We, the voters, do not need two Liberal democrats running against each other in the next presidential election. Jeb should either enter the primaries as a democrat or step aside as he is NOT a republican under any definition of the word.

  36. Bush can trumpet ‘competition’ with the Chinese all day, but Common Core doesn’t come close to addressing the widening gulf in the comparison between the two resulting education systems.
    The basic problem Bush has is people don’t always automatically assume ‘Common’ has a defined path to a better outcome than China, and that ‘Common Core’ simply means a common level of attainment, which will lead to a lessening of excellence in any.
    China uses the old time worn approach, force, to assure learning, Common Core simply says, be only as good as the bulk of others/
    If we had something in Common Core that led to 3rd grade entry into algebra, or computer program writing, then yes, we could have something like competition with China, but until, all I hear is there is a problem and I can help fix it.. give me power.

  37. Feigning idiocy goes over better in Texas and Florida than Maine and Connecticutt

  38. Thank God I have the Libertarian Party to vote for. I’d hate to have to actually cast my vote for Hillary.

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