The Washington Post

Jeb Bush explains

Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush has taken to Twitter to clarify some controversial remarks he made Monday that were perceived as critical of the Republican party.

Bush hasn’t retracted his words, which included insisting that people like himself and Presidents George H.W. Bush and Ronald Reagan would have struggled in the 2012 Republican presidential nomination fight. But he is emphasizing that he also blamed Democratic lawmakers and the White House for the lack of cooperation in government.

Bush’s explanation — told in four tweets — is below.

The son of former president George H. W. Bush suggested in an interview with Bloomberg that his father and Ronald Reagan would both struggle to survive a modern GOP primary because of their bipartisan work.

Of course, the remark was picked up by President Obama’s campaign. It feeds into an argument that Democrats have been arguing for years — that the current GOP is too extreme.

Like former president Bill Clinton, Bush found that when you’re expected to be a loyal surrogate for one side, speaking extemporaneously can be dangerous.

Rachel Weiner covers local politics for The Washington Post.


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