To avoid “a November catastrophe,” said Artur Davis, Republicans should draft Jeb Bush as their presidential nominee. The bitter primary fight between Newt Gingrich and Mitt Romney will likely be protracted, leaving “two candidates so bruised that neither remains competitive with Obama.” Jeb Bush, whose “reform-oriented conservatism” made him a highly popular governor in Florida, is the only available Republican who might still be pressed into running.
“A hero of the conservative base,” Bush would also have broad appeal to the general electorate, because of his successful efforts in Florida to reform education, rein in medical tort liability, and turn the state into “a national laboratory for controlling health-care costs.” He’s popular with seniors, Jewish voters, and, as the husband of a Mexican-American, Hispanics.
Jeb presumably chose not to run this year because of lingering negativity about the last Bush presidency. But it’s the Obama presidency that’s now the issue, and the GOP can’t afford to wait until 2016 for one of its brightest stars to run. Bush “should measure his reluctance against the risks looming for his party and, potentially, his country.”