For the past year, Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) has been wooing his longtime friend Jeb Bush to jump into the 2016 presidential race, even as he has shunned potential Tea Party rivals like Sens. Ted Cruz of Texas and Rand Paul of Kentucky.
Boehner stepped up his lobbying efforts this week, singing the former Florida governor’s praises in a pair of media interviews.
The Speaker’s preference for yet another Bush White House run is partly political, partly personal. He sees Bush as undeniably the strongest, most viable candidate who could pull the party together after a bruising primary and take on a formidable Hillary Clinton, sources said. And the two men are aligned politically, hailing from the same centrist strand of the GOP.
But politics is often personal, and much of Boehner’s desire for a third Bush presidency stems from his decades-long relationship with the Bush family, including Jeb.