More troubling for Bush is that many supporters are getting jittery because he appeared ill-equipped to appreciate and manage the demands of the modern-day, 24-hour news cycle. And, they note, this isn’t the first time Bush has floundered over what he believes – a waffling that could undermine his reputation as a deep-thinking ideas man comfortable in his own skin, one who decries politicians “who just bend with the wind.”
But Bush appeared to do just that last month, according to conservatives who criticized his shifting positions over Indiana’s Religious Freedom Restoration Act, which allowed some businesses to deny some services – in effect, to gays — based on the owner’s religious views. Bush said it was “the right thing” to do.
Then, an anti-discrimination national backlash against Indiana brewed. The state clarified the law to ensure it didn’t allow for discrimination based on people’s sexual orientation or gender identification. Bush changed right along with it by saying the law was “in the right place [because] we shouldn’t discriminate based on sexual orientation.”…
“Jeb doesn’t surround himself with yes men. But he hates being handled, and this is what happens when you don’t have a real campaign, when you don’t have someone who manages the candidate because he’s not really a candidate,” said one longtime Bush-backing Republican. “And even if Jeb was prepared, if he had his talking points, he obviously didn’t prepare enough.”