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The Insiders
Posted at 08:47 AM ET, 06/12/2012

Is there a method to Jeb Bush and Bill Clinton’s madness?

Whatever one thinks of Jeb Bush and Bill Clinton — and they are perhaps the most popular members of their parties — it is interesting that both are making remarks that drive their nominees and respective establishments crazy.

After last week's remarks by Clinton about Bain and Mitt Romney's sterling business record, it is Bush’s turn this week. Bush, who many people say would have made a better president than George W., cast a cloud over Romney, bemoaning the hyper-partisan nature of today's Republicans and comparing them unfavorably to the principled compromise that informed the presidencies of Reagan and Bush Sr. (Brother didn't mention brother on this list, which was undoubtedly more than a Freudian skip.)

So what is it about these loquacious men? Why can't they stay on message? Some might detect the whiff of envy or hidden agendas. Bush, in particular, has been letting some of his private musings out in public. Like Hamlet, Bush has been talking about his frustrated ambition and complaining wistfully that this was his year. Some, too, see in Clinton a method in his madness, namely the promotion of his spouse.

But in the recent Jeb Bush remarks, there is also a lot of truth. Republicans have ended any willingness to reach across the aisle when the country really needed compromise and have withdrawn into an echo chamber with one-hand clapping. 

By  |  08:47 AM ET, 06/12/2012

 
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