At a meeting with wealthy Republican investors at the Metropolitan Club on Tuesday, Jeb Bush admitted that his brother, former President George W. Bush, was his most trusted adviser on U.S.-Israel policy. Jeb Bush cited his brother’s influential role after he was asked about his relationship with former Secretary of State James Baker.
Baker is part of Jeb Bush’s foreign policy advisory team, but he has become controversial to many Republicans for having the temerity to criticize Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Hoping to stem controversy over Baker’s role, Jeb Bush reassured the audience that Baker isn’t his key adviser on Israeli policy.
Instead, Jeb argued that his go-to guy is none other than his brother, George W. Bush. In referencing the former President, Jeb stated, “if you want to know who I listen to for advice, it’s him.”
While citing his brother’s influence on Middle East policy was probably enough to assuage the concerns of the pro-Israel GOP aristocrats in the room, the admission that Jeb Bush takes Middle East policy advice from his brother is less likely to be well-received by the American public.
Americans who remember the Iraq war debacle and the failed policies of the Bush-Cheney administration will find little comfort in the notion that Jeb Bush is determined to pursue a path similar to the one his brother took on foreign affairs. After charting a disastrous course in the Middle East for eight long years, George W. Bush would seem to be the last person a presidential contender would want to consult with, to hash out foreign policy decisions.
A majority of Americans still hold an unfavorable view of the Bush presidency, but 87 percent of Republicans now look back fondly on the Bush years. In the right-wing bubble that surrounds Jeb Bush, he probably regards turning to his brother for advice as a positive selling point. However, the American people almost certainly will not share that sentiment.
Jeb Bush has tried at times to distance himself from the failed policies of his brother. However, his confession in a room populated with Republican hedge fund billionaires, that he looks to his brother for advice on foreign policy matters, reveals the truth. Electing Jeb Bush President of the United States would bring George W. Bush’s policies back into the White House. America cannot afford to return to those policies.
Keith Brekhus is a progressive American who currently resides in Red Lodge, Montana. He is co-host for the Liberal Fix radio show. He holds a Master’s Degree in Sociology from the University of Missouri. In 2002, he ran for Congress as a Green Party candidate in the state of Missouri. In 2014, he worked as a field organizer for Democrat Ann Kirkpatrick’s successful re-election bid in Arizona’s 1st Congressional District. He can be followed on Twitter @keithbrekhus or on Facebook.