By Bill Brubaker
Washington Post Staff Writer
Thursday, May 11, 2006
Coming soon: President Bush III?
The second -- and current -- President Bush suggested yesterday that his younger brother, Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, would make a "great president."
"I would like to see Jeb run at some point in time, but I have no idea if that's his intention or not," Bush said in an interview with Florida reporters, according to a story on the St. Petersburg Times Web site.
If that sounds familiar, the Bush brothers' father, former president George H.W. Bush, made a similar statement last year, telling CNN's Larry King that Jeb Bush would be "awfully good" as president.
"This guy's smart, big and strong. Makes the decisions," the first President Bush said then.
Two brothers have never been elected to serve as U.S. president.
Jeb Bush, 53, who cannot seek reelection after his second term as governor ends in January, has repeatedly said that he will not run for president in 2008, just before his brother leaves the White House.
But that has not stopped at least two fellow Republicans -- his father and his older brother -- from planting the idea.
President Bush said in the interview that he has "pushed" his brother "fairly hard about what he intends to do."
The president said: "I have no idea what he's going to do. I've asked him that question myself. I truly don't think he knows."
In May 2005, King asked the senior Bush if he wanted Jeb Bush to run for president.
"Someday I would, yes," George H.W. Bush said.
"Is the timing wrong now, though?" King asked.
"Yes. The timing's wrong," Bush said. "The main thing is, he doesn't want to do it. Nobody believes that, but . . ."
In yesterday's interview, President Bush said his brother could have a "very bright" political future.