Bush League

Jeb calls for a challenge to Trump in 2020.

“I think someone should run. Just because Republicans ought to be given a choice.”

That was failed 2016 Republican presidential candidate Jeb Bush, speaking with Obama narrator David Axelrod. The former Florida governor was touting Maryland’s Republican governor Larry Hogan but seemed to leave the door open for himself.

“You never say never,” Bush told Axelrod. “Who knows what’s going to happen?”

“Low-Energy Jeb,” as candidate Trump dubbed him in 2016, expressed no complaints with President Trump’s economic policies. On the other hand, Bush is a longstanding and fervent champion of illegal immigration.

“Yes, they broke the law, but it’s not a felony,” Bush told CBS News back in 2014. “It’s an act of love. It’s an act of commitment to your family.”

That was the year of the first “caravan” invasion, in which thousands of Mexican and Central American parents chose to put their own children in the hands of criminal smugglers. This massive act of child abuse and human trafficking drew little if any criticism from Jeb Bush, father of three children. To be fair, also holding off on criticism was Pope Francis and all those activist priests who serve as chaplains of the left and reserve their righteous wrath for Trump.

Describing the violation of U.S. immigration law as an “act of love” might indicate strange priorities for Jeb Bush. The failed 2016 candidate has never come out with equal fervor for more legal immigration based on merit and American needs, which is President Trump’s position. Likewise, Jeb Bush has been pretty quiet about the rulers of Mexico and Central American countries, whose failed policies drive people north.

Bush’s diminutive wife Columba is a “Mexican-born immigrant” who has “steeped Jeb in Hispanic culture.” In reality, “Hispanic” is a linguistic term and there is no overarching Hispanic culture. It may be Columba who has steeped Jeb in support for illegal immigration, official policy of the Mexican government. The “socialist messiah” Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, who believes that all migrants have a “right” to live in the United States, is happy to grab the $33.48 billion in remittances from 2018, a six percent increase from 2017.

More recently, Jeb Bush has targeted the “heartless policy” of separating parents and children who cross the U.S. border illegally and contended that “Children shouldn’t be used as a negotiating tool.” He shows no knowledge that this was the Obama policy.

“Even if the immigration law is executed with perfection, there will be parents separated from their children.” That was a 2011 statement of Cecilia Muñoz, formerly of the National Council of La Raza, and at the time White House Director of Intergovernmental Affairs. Likewise, Bush seems unaware that if a person is jailed for bank robbery or fraud in the USA, her children are never incarcerated with her.

In his conversation with David Axelrod, Bush also evoked “a conversation about what it is to be a conservative.” The nation needs to have “competing ideologies that are dynamic,” Bush said, “rather than revert back to a nostalgic time.” Jeb didn’t wax nostalgic about his brother’s administration, on which 9/11 occurred, but there is a back story here that evokes the college admissions scandal. In the Bush league, success is largely a matter of connections.

In Secrets of the Tomb: Skull and Bones, the Ivy League, and the Hidden Paths of Power, Yale alum Alexandra Robbins charts the founding of the Order of Skull and Bones in the 1830s. More than 150 years later, Robbins explains. “This tiny club has set up networks that have thrust three members into the most powerful position in the world.”

President William Howard Taft, 1909-1914, who also put in a stint as Chief Justice, was a Bonesman. So was President George Herbert Walker Bush, 1988-1992, who was accused by Pat Buchanan of running a “Skull and Bones presidency.” The most recent Skull and Bones alum in the White House is George W. Bush, who in 2004 prevailed against fellow Bonesman John Kerry.

As one Bonesman explained, “the biggest benefit of Skull and Bones is the networking,” and Robbins finds plenty of that. President George H. W. Bush named Bonesman Richard Anthony Moore as ambassador to Ireland and Bonesman Paul Lambert, who had no diplomatic experience, as ambassador to Ecuador.  The pick for secretary of labor was George Ball, with fellow Bonesmen James Hemphill in the department of the interior and Edwin Dale at management and budget.

In similar style, President George W. Bush chose fellow Bonesman William H. Donaldson to head the Securities and Exchange Commission. Skull and Bones vet Edward McNally got the call as general counsel for Homeland Security and senior associate counsel to the president for national security. Bonesman Robert D. McCallum was the pick for assistant attorney general in the civil-rights division of the DOJ, and Bonesman Evan G. Galbraith became a defense representative in Europe and adviser to NATO.

Observers could be forgiven for thinking that the primary consideration for these Bush picks was the Skull and Bones connection, not competence, experience, or any strong conservative profile. Likewise, Americans couldn’t be blamed for seeing the Bush family connection as Jeb’s primary qualification for the White House.

Meanwhile, millions of  “deplorable” Trump supporters could be forgiven for rejecting the open-border ideology of Low-Energy Jeb, which mirrors the view of  Crooked Hillary and the socialist Democrats lining up for 2020.

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Caricature by Donkey Hotey

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