Is there anyone the Bushes don’t support (other than Sarah Palin)?
I feel like I’m writing about pure gossip here, as I’m going to be referencing Twitter here. Jeb Bush tweeted earlier today in support of Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels‘ education reform plan, describing it as “another bold education reform agenda that puts students first.” If we weren’t in a Presidential cycle where the Bushes have already made an impact and Karl Rove wasn’t beating up on Sarah Palin on a regular basis, maybe it could be written off as a former governor showing professional respect. As it is, have to assume there’s something afoot.
The last soiree into the 2012 GOP nomination fight by the Bushes was a little on the nose, to say the very least. Sarah Palin famously responded by calling the Bushes “blue bloods” (to which Meghan McCain responded that she didn’t know what a “blue blood” was). I think it’s a stretch to say this will get anywhere near the same attention or reaction as that. The message this does send quite clearly, though, is that the Bushes are not big fans of the strain of populism that runs the risk of doing to the national GOP what the Delaware GOP primary voters did to Mike Castle. They are sending a message to whatever remains of the Bush political machine to line up behind someone with gravitas and experience, even if it comes at the expense of personality.
Before there’s any hyperventilation over how this is a sign the GOP establishment is out of touch with the silent majority of Palinistas, let’s go over a little polling data:
40% – Sarah Palin’s approval (Gallup, 11/12/10)
52% – Sarah Palin’s disapproval (Gallup, 11/12/10)
8% – People that don’t have an opinion yet
The highest approval she’s had after her fateful Charlie Gibson interview is 48%. She hasn’t topped 44% in the last year. Her disapprovals haven’t gone below 45%. Her name ID is sky-high, meaning she’d need a massive paradigm shift in the midst of an endless slew of hit ads about her abandoning Alaska to do a cable TV show.
Point being that this aversion to Sarah Palin could be a product of electoral calculus more than it’s an issue of distaste for the passions of the great unwashed masses. If Sarah Palin is at the top of the ticket, not only does the GOP have to work to pickup Obama blue states like Indiana, Ohio, Florida and Virginia, they’ll have to deal with a bunch of red states on the table.
That said, really? Mitch Daniels? I like the guy, he’s done very good work with Indiana, but with Obama tacking hard for the center are we really best serving our electoral interests picking guys who are less charismatic than Bob Dole? We’d all like it if the public came at picking the next president without regard for personality, but if that was the case we’d be under the 2nd President Clinton right now.
- Sarah Palin Plus Eight Debuts Next Week [Video] (gawker.com)
- Jeb Bush Sides With His Mother Over Sarah Palin (huffingtonpost.com)
- Bush Beats Palin! (perezhilton.com)
- Karl Rove Slams Sarah Palin, Mike Huckabee Over Bush-Bashing Comments (mediaite.com)
- Bush Sides with Mother over Palin (politicalwire.com)
- Jeb Bush Says Sarah Palin Is ‘Fantastic’ (politics.usnews.com)