“I do think he has a shot at pulling off the nomination, and I think he is probably one of the [top] candidates best equipped to actually govern if he is elected,” said a top GOP lobbyist in Washington of Bush. “But due to factors such as these, I’m not sure you can view his nomination as an inevitability — at least not in the same way many viewed Romney as inevitable four years ago.”

One longtime Bush family friend was even more blunt when asked to compare Jeb and Mitt.

“Jeb is not Mitt Romney. Mitt Romney used his inevitability as a tactical weapon. He was very effective at conveying inevitability without seeming arrogant,” said the family friend. “It is very clear that Jeb, so far, has not created any sense of inevitability.

“Jeb’s campaign is run by very smart, capable people,” the source continued. “So far they haven’t found a formula that has enabled them to counter the impression Trump has created that he is a lackluster, lackadaisical, lack-of-energy candidate.”