Jeb Bush not such a big hit in New Hampshire

posted at 11:01 am on April 13, 2014 by Jazz Shaw

Anyone who dips a toe into the political pool at a high level has to be ready for some critics who will give them a hard time at public event. The most popular politicians will run into the occasional heckler, and if you’re really special you may have shoes thrown at you. But it really takes something special to draw boos and groans at an event where you don’t even show up.

A mention of former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush (R), a potential 2016 presidential contender, brought boos from a conservative crowd in New Hampshire on Saturday.

Speaking at the New Hampshire Freedom Summit, a gathering of conservative activists and figures organized by Americans for Prosperity and Citizens United, billionaire Donald Trump said Bush’s recent comments on immigrants coming to the U.S. as an “act of love” were “out there.”

“You know, I heard Jeb Bush the other day,” he said, with quiet boos and angry murmurs erupting from the crowd at the mention of Bush’s name.

“And he was talking about people that come into this country illegally, they do it for love,” he continued, with the boos growing louder.

I’m not sure if this is more a story about Jeb Bush or New Hampshire. (For the moment we’ll leave aside the somewhat ironic image of Donald Trump acting skeptical about somebody else running for President.) Granite State Republicans are well known experts at defying expectations, something I found out about first hand during the Northeast Republican Leadership Conference earlier this year. While the talking heads on cable news and the big GOP fundraisers were all about Scott Brown, the locals I spoke with were lukewarm at best concerning his run. Jeb Bush seems to be running somewhat parallel to that at the moment, with so many national pundits anxiously debating whether or not he will run while the primary voters in New Hampshire are hissing at the mere mention of his name.

Of course, it’s not as if there’s unanimous consent outside of New Hampshire either. Rupert Murdoch is just about as Ready for Jeb as the Democrats seem to be Ready for Hillary. At the same time, Jeb’s own niece (Jenna Bush Hager) isn’t exactly waiting for an invitation to her uncle’s inaugural ball.

But as for this event, maybe that’s what the Freedom Summit was really all about. It was never intended to clarify Bush’s prospects for 2016. In fact, as one New Hampshire Journal writer put it before the event began, the point was precisely the opposite.

The big draws on the presidential front are Sens. Ted Cruz of Texas and Rand Paul of Kentucky as well as former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee. There will be no Jeb Bush and no Chris Christie. No one conventionally identified with the more moderate (relatively speaking) GOP “establishment.”

At some point down the road there will be an establishment candidate. The day-long event on Saturday will begin to define what could be a long battle to become the conservative alternative to whoever emerges from the establishment wing.

In 2012 it was all about who was going to be “Not Mitt.” Maybe Jeb benefits from having people already looking at who will be “Not Jeb” this time.


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The Jebster isn’t a big hit anywhere…

OmahaConservative on April 13, 2014 at 11:02 AM

Does it matter? He will have tons of money and the media there to tear down everyone but him until the general election.

astonerii on April 13, 2014 at 11:04 AM

Can’t we find anyone not named Bush, Clinton (or Obama) to run for POTUS? Telephone book has millions of new names.

Herb on April 13, 2014 at 11:05 AM

Activate your Cruz Controls.

BuckeyeSam on April 13, 2014 at 11:09 AM

New Hampshire isn’t real big on illegal immigration.

Guess that makes it even.

TimBuk3 on April 13, 2014 at 11:14 AM

JB has no natural constituency, other than the often nameless “big money donors.”

I think the battle is actually for who will be the establishment candidate…Rubio, Walker, JB…and a few days Rand was meeting with Romney’s donors.

There are so far only two anti-establishment candidates.

The race is for who will represent the “center-right” people, the people who take their agenda from the assumptions of the anti-American liberals. The race is for the “not conservative but I can play one well enough during the primaries.”

Conservatives will know very quickly who is willing to represent them.

EastofEden on April 13, 2014 at 11:15 AM

Rupert Murdoch is just about as Ready for Jeb as the Democrats seem to be Ready for Hillary.

Rupert said the other day that he’s pretty ready for Clinton himself.

xblade on April 13, 2014 at 11:18 AM

No more RINO’s! Hopefully all RINO’s will become extinct in the coming years…………….

nobama1267 on April 13, 2014 at 11:22 AM

If there is a Bush on the ticket in 2016, a Democrat will be taking the oath in January, 2017.

Wallythedog on April 13, 2014 at 11:22 AM

NH is strange. I don’t think this is indicative of much. Strong libertarian and anti-war undercurrents. Also hostile to Bush too.

swamp_yankee on April 13, 2014 at 11:25 AM

The only way Jeb can win in NH is if he finds a way to put the Old Man of the Mountain back together and put back on the mountain. Get that done and we will get back to you.

RickinNH on April 13, 2014 at 11:27 AM

This is good news. Enough with the crap candidates.

RI_Red on April 13, 2014 at 11:28 AM

First question is why are a bunch of conservatives listening to Donald Trump?

Bitter Clinger on April 13, 2014 at 11:28 AM

I wouldn’t vote for Jeb Bush for any public office even if he was the only person running.

Having the office left vacant would serve the nation better than installing someone who has no regard for the rule of law or the needs and best interest of American citizens and legal immigrants.

Jeb Bush is just another politician, consumed with ambition and a deep seated inferiority complex, exacerbated when his father and his brother both became presidents, who’s desperately trying to curry favor with his own preferred special interest group in a bid to garner votes. He’s succeeded in proving he’d gladly trample the rights and interests of his fellow Americans in order to attain his own goals.

thatsafactjack on April 13, 2014 at 11:49 AM

The GOPe is either misreading or flat-out ignoring the mood of its base. We are done with holding our noses and pulling the lever for whoever has an “R” after their name. If Bush is the nominee, many of us will stay home or vote 3rd party. They assume we will fall in line like always, but not this time.

SheVee on April 13, 2014 at 11:50 AM

Not about the subject, but does Bob Woodward have a brain anymore?
0bama hasn’t brought up race? He’s nuts or deaf!

Bambi on April 13, 2014 at 11:51 AM

Please, politicians, pundits, “experts”, etc. stop talking about the 2016 election. There won’t be a 2016 election. There won’t be a 2014 election if you don’t focus on the battle right in front of you. The first thing that has to be done is to minimalize voter fraud and neutralize the government media. All this talk is a lot of fun but we’re in an emergency situation.

crankyoldlady on April 13, 2014 at 11:53 AM

First question is why are a bunch of conservatives listening to Donald Trump?

Bitter Clinger on April 13, 2014 at 11:28 AM

Trump is an excellent self-promoting weather vein, and has been ever since he and Rupert got together 37 years ago to hype The Donald as the Savior of New York.

But to be a great self-promoter you have to be able to gauge your audience, so Trump’s attack on Jeb Bush is a sign he thinks that’s where the bulk of the involved Republican voter base is headed or is already there. That’s not a good sign for Jeb, especially if Christie stays in the race and he doesn’t have the party’s moderate voting block all to himself.

jon1979 on April 13, 2014 at 11:53 AM

NH resident here. NH’s quirky libertarian leaning electorate is far more likely to go for Rand Paul than for Jeb Bush. GW Bush was never popular here. In 2000, McCain (ugh!) handily defeated GW in the NH primary. NH’s Dems also went for Hillary over Obama in 2008 but I attribute that to the large elderly female population in NH. Sadly, the few MA schoolteachers that don’t retire to Cape Cod (a FORMERLY Republican district) move to NH and then vote as if they’re still in MA.

NH has a Democrat Governor, a D Senator and both reps are Ds. The as always inept Rs cannot seem to find non-retread viable congressional candidates. Scott Brown has a good shot against Senator Jean Shaheen who is correctly portrayed as as Obama/Reid rubber stamp tone deaf to the needs of NH. Brown’s ancestors go way back in NH and he has owned a very modest summer home in Rye NH for over 2 years.

philw1776 on April 13, 2014 at 12:11 PM

If Bush is the nominee, many of us will stay home or vote 3rd party. They assume we will fall in line like always, but not this time.

SheVee on April 13, 2014 at 11:50 AM

You guys probably voted for Perot for President. How did that work out for ya?

unclesmrgol on April 13, 2014 at 12:18 PM

Some wonder what is behind Jeb saying the gratuitous nonsense that illegal immigration is “an act of love.” Certainly there is not even a single Democrat that would say something so blatantly out of step with the mainstream electorate. Well, beats me, I don’t have a clue why he said it.

anotherJoe on April 13, 2014 at 12:24 PM

Go ahead and nominate him, GOP. I won’t be voting for him. Not ever. But you fellas go ahead and do what you think is best.

Rational Thought on April 13, 2014 at 12:27 PM

Went out and worked for McCain in NH in 2008 (I know, I know, we were desperate) then worked for Romney in 2012 (we were happy do do so even with his limitations). Will NOT work for Jeb Bush in 2016. May not even vote if it’s Bush-Clinton again. Make it the lowest turnout ever if those re-treads are the “choices”.

philw1776 on April 13, 2014 at 12:43 PM

Interesting that in NH we got the supposed rino Donald Trump getting cheers as the crowd boos the uber-Rino Jebush. Does Trump reflect Jeb and Christie in being in league with the leftists on climate change? Well, see below.

Quotes from Donald Trump on climate change:

“Gore wants us to clean up our factories and plants in order to protect us from global warming, when China and other countries couldn’t care less. It would make us totally non-competitive in the manufacturing world, and China, Japan and India are laughing at America’s stupidity.” -Donald Trump

“Obama’s speech on climate change was scary. It will lower our standard of living and raise costs of fuel & food for everyone.”

“Surprise? 1970’s global cooling alarmists were pushing the same no-growth liberal agenda as today’s global warming.”

“The concept of global warming was created by and for the Chinese in order to make U.S. manufacturing non-competitive.”

anotherJoe on April 13, 2014 at 12:46 PM

I hope people next year will stop watching WE LOVE BUSH NEWS station aka FOX NEWS. From Brit Hume to Charles and on down, they will bash everyone else except Bush because Fox News takes its orders from establishment republican. Like they did in 2012. They did not have any bad words to say about Mitt. They were always bashing the other republican candidate.

BroncosRock on April 13, 2014 at 12:49 PM

I found this old article (2013) from Huffington post by David Paul which highlights Jeb’s left leanings or at least apparent ambivalence on gun control and gay marriage:

In a manner unimaginable just a decade ago, leading Republicans have spoken out in support of gay marriage…

Jeb Bush, an erstwhile 2016 contender, is struggling to locate himself on the principle vs. politics scale. Clearly rusty after a layoff of almost a decade since his last campaign, he has re-emerged into a Republican Party that has lost its bearings. Jeb’s father, George H. W. Bush, grew up in a New England Republican political family.. Jeb seems to want to be his Dad, a prudent, cautious Republican of the old school, but the Republican landscape is no longer welcoming of his father’s softer demeanor. Jeb needs an edge, but it is not coming easily.

A few weeks after stumbling over the immigration issue, changing his stance several times within a day or two… Speaking this week about gay marriage and gun control, a visibly chastened Bush retreated from taking any positions on anything, providing instead a magnificent formulation of political non-speak:

“The effort ought to be to find consensus, that there should be rewards politically for a consensus-oriented approach that solves problems. On the other hand, passing legislation that doesn’t solve the problem isn’t going to solve any problem, either. I’d be wary of simple solutions to complex problems. This is a complicated issue.” -Jeb Bush

This “ambivalence” is almost always a precursor to a full tilt switch to the leftist position. We’ve seen that with Christie (as on gun control, amnesty, and now gay marriage). And on immigration, I guess Jeb tired of having to put up false fronts of ambivalence on immigration and so he went all of a sudden as far left as you can possibly go on that, saying something (the “act of love” comment) that even the most leftist of Dems wouldn’t even dare say. Incredible.

anotherJoe on April 13, 2014 at 1:22 PM

While John McCain is senile, Jeb Bush, who calls an invasion of his own country by tens of millions, with a high violent crime and drunk driving rate on top of it – love – is insane and should be fitted with a white coat that ties in the back.

VorDaj on April 13, 2014 at 1:53 PM

Some wonder what is behind Jeb saying the gratuitous nonsense that illegal immigration is “an act of love.” Certainly there is not even a single Democrat that would say something so blatantly out of step with the mainstream electorate. Well, beats me, I don’t have a clue why he said it.

anotherJoe on April 13, 2014 at 12:24 PM

Yeb’s wife is mexican , was illegal at one time and most probably, Yeb is a mexican citizen ( by marriage) too .

burrata on April 13, 2014 at 1:57 PM

Trump is an excellent self-promoting weather vein…

jon1979 on April 13, 2014 at 11:53 AM

I think you gots your very-close veins mixed up with a weather vane.

Would I be vain to mention I won a spelling-bee in third grade?

ZeusGoose on April 13, 2014 at 2:07 PM

I think you gots your very-close veins mixed up with a weather vane.

Would I be vain to mention I won a spelling-bee in third grade?

ZeusGoose on April 13, 2014 at 2:07 PM

Yes you wood.

crankyoldlady on April 13, 2014 at 2:20 PM

Yeb’s wife is mexican , was illegal at one time and most probably, Yeb is a mexican citizen ( by marriage) too .

burrata on April 13, 2014 at 1:57 PM

He has a degree in Latin American studies. He taught English as a second language in Mexico and that’s where he met his wife.

crankyoldlady on April 13, 2014 at 2:27 PM

Yes you wood.

crankyoldlady on April 13, 2014 at 2:20 PM

Very nice!

‘wood’ and ‘would’ can also stump people ;)

In fact, that’s what caused me to lose the first grade competition!

ZeusGoose on April 13, 2014 at 2:38 PM

You guys probably voted for Perot for President. How did that work out for ya?unclesmrgol on April 13, 2014 at 12:18 PM

And you probably voted for pappy Bush and Dole. Two of the biggest big govt cheerleaders who explicitly denigrated everything Reagan stood for. How did that work for you?

AH_C on April 13, 2014 at 3:04 PM

In fact, that’s what caused me to lose the first grade competition!

ZeusGoose on April 13, 2014 at 2:38 PM

When I was in school and we had spelling bees the ones left standing had to spell Mississippi or antidisestablishmentarianism.

crankyoldlady on April 13, 2014 at 3:07 PM

[Jeb] has a degree in Latin American studies.

crankyoldlady on April 13, 2014 at 2:27 PM

Um, you got to be kidding me, I thought. Sure enough, I see on wiki, that is the case.

anotherJoe on April 13, 2014 at 3:16 PM

Um, you got to be kidding me, I thought. Sure enough, I see on wiki, that is the case.

anotherJoe on April 13, 2014 at 3:16 PM

Ah you didn’t believe me huh. I looked him up on wiki too. We old people know how too. :-)

crankyoldlady on April 13, 2014 at 3:40 PM

Common Core … followed by illegal immigrant love. Jeb is done.

Carnac on April 13, 2014 at 3:49 PM

The problem with some of these people is they think what works for their state or small district will work for everybody else. Pelosi is a case in point. Whatever worked in Florida might not be good for the whole country. This country is very diverse which is why most power should belong to the states.

crankyoldlady on April 13, 2014 at 3:54 PM

Ah you didn’t believe me huh. I looked him up on wiki too. We old people know how too. :-)

crankyoldlady on April 13, 2014 at 3:40 PM

Right. It’s not the young, but the tech savvy old people that got the advantage these days. The youth… they need some tech re-educating!

anotherJoe on April 13, 2014 at 4:19 PM

anotherJoe on April 13, 2014 at 4:19 PM

One thing is us old folks have time. I always say the internet is for retired people and maybe students. Working people don’t have the time unless it’s part of their job.

crankyoldlady on April 13, 2014 at 4:27 PM

Scott Brown has a good shot against Senator Jean Shaheen who is correctly portrayed as as Obama/Reid rubber stamp tone deaf to the needs of NH. Brown’s ancestors go way back in NH and he has owned a very modest summer home in Rye NH for over 2 years.

philw1776 on April 13, 2014 at 12:11 PM

You left out a zero in your final sentence but otherwise you are spot-on.

Scott’s parents met in NH; his mom was a waitress at Rye Beach and his dad was stationed at Pease Air Force Base, also on the Seacoast, and after they married they lived on-base. The only reason Scott wasn’t born on-base was because at the time Pease didn’t have its own hospital, so he was born at the base hospital a couple of miles away at Portsmouth Naval Shipyard, just over the border in Maine.

Del Dolemonte on April 13, 2014 at 5:05 PM

Rand will win NH.

ezspirit on April 13, 2014 at 8:22 PM

NH is strange. I don’t think this is indicative of much. Strong libertarian and anti-war undercurrents.

swamp_yankee on April 13, 2014 at 11:25 AM

You say those two as though they are mutual .

cableguy615 on April 13, 2014 at 8:29 PM

<

Strong libertarian and anti-war undercurrents.

swamp_yankee on April 13, 2014 at 11:25 AM

You say those two as though they are mutual .

cableguy615 on April 13, 2014 at 8:29 PM

Sorry, I am exhausted this evening. I meant “strong” and “libertarian”. Those were the words I was referring to..

Kind of like being a hard-core fire-breathing mega-principled centrist.

cableguy615 on April 13, 2014 at 8:34 PM

I’m from Florida. Bush was not a bad governor at all.

That said, I would not support him for President. I’ve had enough of pro illegal immigration and he is dead set on getting that through on principle, not for votes- most will go to Dems, but for Hispanics. He believes that love crap he said.

More than that I agree with his mother when she said enough Bushes in the White House. There are 300 million folks in America, we can’t find one that isn’t a crazy radical like Obama, or a Clinton or a Bush??

Get a good governor that understands how to run a state. Senators should never be allowed to be Presidents, and I like some of them. But they don’t know how to govern, just bitch and get on Sunday shows.

archer52 on April 13, 2014 at 8:54 PM

But he is the only one who can win!

Brock Robamney on April 14, 2014 at 5:47 AM

Anybody who believes that illegal aliens are “cuddly little teddy bears” who just want to “love us to pieces” needs to check into a psychiatric clinic, not seek the presidency.

MaiDee on April 14, 2014 at 9:32 AM