Barbara Bush relents a bit on 2016: ‘Maybe it’s ok’ if another Bush runs

Former first lady Barbara Bush sat down with Fox News for an interview at her home in Houston, Texas that aired on Wednesday. After stating for over a year that she thinks the Bush family should stay out of presidential politics, she said "maybe it's ok" if another Bush runs in 2016.

Bush was her classically frank self over the course of the interview, although she joked that she's giving up "straight shooting" for Lent.

 

In April 2013, Bush said that "there are other people out there that are very qualified, and we've had enough Bushes," when asked about the likelihood that the former Florida governor would run in 2016.

In January 2014, she expanded on that comment, saying "there’s no question in my mind that Jeb is the best qualified person to run for president, but I hope he won’t, because I think he’ll get all my enemies, all his brother’s, all — and there are other families."

This week, she repeated her worries: "It just seemed ridiculous to me in a country of this size that we didn't have other families."


(AP Photo/Reed Saxon)

 

Bush's slightly softening stance toward a potential 2016 run for Jeb was inspired by reading Doris Kearns Goodwin's "The Bully Pulpit," which Bush paraphrased as showing that in the 1700s, only three families ruled politics too. She added though, that "Maybe Jeb's given all he should give. He's worked awfully hard for a long time."

In a Washington Post-ABC News poll from January 30, 18 percent of Republicans and Republican-leaning independents currently support Jeb Bush for the 2016 GOP nomination.

Doocy also asked Bush whether she had read Maureen Dowd's column from last week titled, "Brace Yourself for Hillary and Jeb." She said she had seen it, but had also recently stopped getting the New York Times after reading the obituary of Leonard Mason Smith, which said, "In lieu of flowers, the family asks that you cancel your subscription to The New York Times."

"And so I did," Bush said.

Bush also discussed how she hates when people criticize George W. Bush, who she called her hero, and that "people don't ever dare do it in front of me. Or behind me."

She said the two were so close because she was a young parent who spent a lot of time with her oldest son. "I could play golf with George W. and throw him off the golf course for profanity," she said.

 

Doocy wore striped socks in the style of George H.W. Bush to the interview, and gave a pair to Bush for her to deliver to her husband, which he called "Fox socks."

Jaime Fuller reports on national politics for "The Fix" and Post Politics. She worked previously as an associate editor at the American Prospect, a political magazine based in Washington, D.C.

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