NEW YORK (CBS) – Former President George W. Bush and his wife Laura wanted his brother Jeb Bush to seek the Republican presidential nomination in 2012, the former first lady said Wednesday in Florida.
“We wanted him to [run] this time,” Laura Bush said in Sarasota, according to the Herald-Tribune. She added that she and the former president “wish he would” run, saying Jeb Bush would be a “wonderful” president in part due to his work on education.
Jeb Bush, the younger brother of George W. Bush and the son of former President George H.W. Bush, was governor of Florida from 1999 to 2007. Bush has ruled out seeking the presidency in this cycle.
Bush, who speaks Spanish and is married to a woman born in Mexico, has been active in trying to bring Hispanic voters – a crucial and growing vowing bloc that usually supports Democrats – to the Republican Party. Earlier this year, he said Republicans should not just run for president by attacking President Obama.
“It’s good to be critical of (President Obama) — I think the president means well, but his policies have failed,” he said. “But just to stop there and say, ‘I’m going to win because I’m against what’s going on’ is not good enough.”
An endorsement from Bush, which he has said is possible, could give a significant boost to a candidate in the Sunshine State, which holds its primaries on January 31.
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