LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – In an interview, 36-year-old George P. Bush
is as plain-spoken as his grandmother Barbara, who in his telling wears the pants in the Bush family.
And while he says his father Jeb, the former governor of Florida, is sincere when he says he isn’t campaigning to join the Romney ticket, George P. also strongly suggests that his dad would say yes if asked: “If called upon to serve, he will,” he says flatly.
No, he said, because “in his hearts of hearts, it just wasn’t there. He’s enjoying doing what he is doing now, like spending time with my mother.”
Bush also says that his father is “thrilled’ to be in business with his other son, Jeb Bush Jr., in Miami.
The former governor recently said on the “Charlie Rose” show that he would turn down the veep slot. But — there’s always a “but” in politics — his son said something a little different.
“He loves to fight for conservative causes, and there are other ways to help, whether it is as vice president or not. He is not currently interested” in the vice presidential slot, but would take it if pressed.
“He can speak to the immigrant story and to the American dream not only as a Cuban but also he translates well to other Hispanic communities. He’s incredibly intelligent. He has a national career in the foreseeable future.”
At age 12, George P. addressed the 1988 Republican National Convention on behalf of his grandfather, George H.W. Bush. He spoke at the 2000 and 2004 conventions, too. He knows the game of politics, and may himself run for office at some point.
But he is in town to raise money for his Maverick PAC, which is aimed at younger Republican professionals.
“My generation could be the first generation that will not be better off than the previous generation,” he said in an interview at the Republican Party’s state headquarters here. “Uncertainty in their eyes is what you see.”
That’s why, he says, he is hosting fundraisers around the country — yes, even here in Bill Clinton’s Little Rock.
Suzi Parker is an Arkansas-based political and cultural journalist and author of “Sex in the South: Unbuckling the Bible Belt.” Follow her on Twitter at @SuziParker