Jeb Bush is back, and some think he’s looking presidential
MIAMI — When Jeb Bush left office four years ago, his public appearances were as scarce as bi-partisan man hugs.
[…] But in recent months, as the Republican Party of Florida has grappled with a leadership vacuum, Bush’s political profile has grown as fast as the national deficit.
He headlined a fundraiser for Bill McCollum’s gubernatorial campaign, starred in a YouTube video touting Jeff Atwater's campaign for state chief financial officer and helped install state Sen. John Thrasher as the state party’s heir apparent -- all the while looming on the sidelines of the fierce Republican Senate primary between Gov. Charlie Crist and Marco Rubio.
The capper came Thursday when, at the top of the 7 o’clock hour, right after Vice President Joe Biden, Bush made a rare network television appearance on NBC's Today Show. The intensely private Bush's interview with the overly familiar Matt Lauer rattled Florida political circles.
Was this the beginning of a Jeb juggernaut that would culminate in a 2012 presidential bid?
“My wife called me immediately and said he looked presidential,” said Thrasher, who as the former House speaker helped Bush lay down his agenda. “I said, ‘Who knows? We’ll see.’ I’m ready to go to Iowa any time he’s ready.”
Burp. If I read this article in a sane country on, say, April Fool’s Day, I’d laugh at the absurdity of it. How could anybody seriously propose installing another Bush in the White House? But then I remembered that this isn’t a sane country. It’s America in 2010, and the article didn’t come out on April 1st, but January 30. By now, it’s clear, there is nothing so misguided, so stupid, so destructive or so absurd that it isn’t being considered in the hyperactive brains of our political class at any given moment. They never sleep and they have no morals.
I wouldn’t be surprised to hear something as appalling as “Bush-Palin 2012” floated around as a trial balloon in the near future. When you think about it, it’s a frighteningly plausible ticket. Jeb’s got the backing of the Republican elites, and Sarah can bring the useful idiots from the Tea Party movement to provide populist cover. Exxon, Goldman Sachs, and Halliburton will be on hand to supply the necessary funding. It’s a perfect Frankenstein monster, pieced together from the mutant DNA strands of a totally corrupt and cynical political culture. Chris Mathews will love it.
It’s never too early to plan ahead, and planning ahead in today’s America means preparing for the worst. Renew your passport.