The 17-year story behind Marco Rubio’s cut-down of Jeb Bush

“The minute I saw [Rubio’s] announcement, I had every reason to assume, regrettably, that this was never going to be the same,” said Jorge Arrizurieta, who first met Bush in the 1980s, served in different roles during his governorship and is now a top donor.

“I’ve heard many common friends call it a betrayal by Marco, but not Jeb,” said Ana Navarro, a Republican strategist who is a friend of both men but supports Bush in this race. “Jeb’s not a guy to cry over spilled milk. Jeb’s got a goal ahead of him, and wasting time psychoanalyzing Marco’s motives won’t help him get there.”

Since then, Bush and Rubio have rarely spoken one another’s names — but they have talked about each other all the time.

Rubio, for instance, talked for 25 minutes in June at the Prescott Bush awards dinner — named for Jeb Bush’s grandfather — without mentioning the Bush name. He never mentioned Bush to a room full of seniors during a central Florida campaign stop in September.

But in both places, he implied a contrast, telling the Prescott Bush awards crowd in Connecticut that it was time to “transition from the past we are so proud of to the exciting future that awaits our country.”