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Politics

Jeb Bush Starts Backing Republicans in Iowa and Across the Nation

May 6, 2014 - 6:00pm

As speculation continues to grow that he will follow his fathers and brothers footsteps and run for the Republican presidential nomination in 2016, former Gov. Jeb Bush, R-Fla., is increasingly growing politically active helping candidates across the nation.

This week, the Des Moines Register reported that Bush will be hosting a fundraiser for Gov. Terry Brandstad, R-Iowa, later this month in South Florida. Iowa hosts the first caucus which kicks off the contests for the Republican presidential nomination. The Bush family has relied heavily on Iowa during various presidential bids, with George H.W. Bush upsetting Ronald Reagan there in 1980 and George W. Bush winning it in 2000. Only in 1988 did the Bush family stumble in Iowa where the first Bush placed third behind Bob Dole and Pat Robertson.

The former Florida governor has been busy offering endorsements in other states, as well. At the end of last week, Bush threw his support behind North Carolina state House Speaker Thom Tillis for the Republican nomination to challenge U.S. Sen. Kay Hagan, D-N.C. Tillis won the Republican nomination on Tuesday.

Last week Bush threw his support to former U.S. Assistant Treasury Secretary Neel Kashkari who is challenging Gov. Jerry Brown, D-Calif., in the Golden State.

Today, Im proud to endorse Neel Kashkari, a bold conservative Republican leader, as Californias next governor," Bush announced last week. From his time in the private sector to his time in public service, Neel has demonstrated a unique ability to bring people together to achieve success in challenging circumstances. He is a principled man of action not someone who simply leads from behind.

Fixing California is no small task, but Neel Kashkari has the vision and the drive to reject the status quo and usher in a new era of opportunity for the states families and communities, Bush added. Whether its creating jobs, implementing regulatory reform or improving education for children, there is no doubt that Neel is the right leader for California.

Both Branstad and Kashkari have praised Bushs record on education during his time in Tallahassee. Kashkaris education plan notes Bushs stunning results lifting the achievement of low-income, inner-city, and minority students in the Sunshine State.

I greatly admire Gov. Bush and the tremendous work he did as governor to improve Floridas schools and transform the lives of millions of kids, and Im humbled and honored to receive his endorsement for my gubernatorial campaign today, Kashkari said after Bush made the endorsement. Gov. Bush proved in Florida what I believe is also true in California that every child can learn and excel, regardless of where they come from or how much money their parents make. With the right policies and the right leadership, we can fix Californias schools and turn our economy around, and thats the reason Im running for governor.

Bush is not the only potential Republican presidential candidate throwing his weight behind Tillis and Kashkari. After backing another candidate in the primary, U.S. Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., endorsed Tillis. Even though he is denying wanting to make a third try at the presidency, former Gov. Mitt Romney, R-Mass., has also been active, endorsing Kashkari last week and throwing his support behind Tillis in a last-minute endorsement on Monday.

Reach Kevin Derby at kderby@sunshinestatenews.com.

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