Jeb Bush’s biggest challenge will be his name as critics address “the dynasty thing” as he tries to convince New Hampshire voters that he is separate from his brother and father. Trying to make the distinction is necessary since both previous Bushes did not do well here. Met with skepticism and hostility from the Republicans, Bush sought to win over his skeptics who are not too crazy about having a third Bush in the White House.
“I’m going to have to show my heart, show who I am, tell my story,” he said. “It’s a little different than the story of my brother and my dad. This may come as a shock to you, but you have brothers and sisters so you may appreciate this. We’re not all alike. We make our own mistakes in life, we’re on our own life’s journey.”
Bush’s speech during the New Hampshire Republican Summit focused on reminding the audience that he is indeed a conservative, using his record during his tenure as governor of Florida to prove his point. “My record is a conservative one,” the yet to formally declare presidential candidate said. “It’s an I’m-not-kidding conservative record, a record of accomplishment. I did it, and I didn’t just talk about it.”
The former governor emphasized his accomplishments during the speech, a selling play that Bush hopes will show Republicans that in fact he a conservative. He argued that he “cut taxes, reduced the size of the government workforce, created 1.3 million new jobs, and left the state with billions in funds.” Bush added that “accomplishment matters” and “the big desk is different than a United States Senator.”
On the issue of Common Core, a standard the former governor supports and conservatives are opposed, Bush argued that states need “a high standard to improve student achievement” adding “we don’t need a federal government involved in this at all.”
During the Q&A segment after the speech, an audience member told Bush that she is worried that the nomination process will be a “coronation since it seems like it since the establishment is backing you as a candidate”. Bush replied that he doesn’t see any “coronation coming my way, trust me. I will have to earn it if I get into the arena, nobody is going to give it to me.”