Argyle, Texas — His famous name casts a shadow over George P. Bush, the only member of the dynasty’s politicians currently in office. He enters the final day of a difficult campaign to leave the Texas Attorney General.
For some Texas, the Bush family’s name is a badge of honesty, reminiscent of the days of political debate that show honesty and respect. For others, failing the party and betraying the last president, Donald J. Trump, is a sign of disqualification of an old Republican guard.
Mr. Bush wants to campaign for Ken Paxton, the incumbent of the Second Republican Party. Serious legal issues — Including prosecution of securities fraud and ongoing federal corruption investigations — urged prominent Republicans to take him in the primary. Mr. Bush succeeded in breaking up with Mr. Paxton on Tuesday.
A few years ago, Bush, whose mother was from Mexico and whose father was Governor of Florida, believed his aides might have won the race easily, and then New, more diverse generations of Republicans..
But that was before the ground changed and his family publicly spoke to Mr. Trump in a failed effort to upset his bid for the president.
Mr. Bush broke up with his father (Jeb), his uncle (George W.) and his grandfather (George HW) and matched Mr. Trump and his followers.Efforts to keep himself away from his relatives were captured in Campaign beer koozie Quoting Mr. Trump’s words, his campaign was distributed last year. I like him. ” Below the line drawing where Mr. Trump is waving Mr. Bush’s hand.
The effort was not rewarded. Mr. Trump filed a proceeding in an attempt to overturn the 2020 elections and supported Mr. Paxton, who appeared with Mr. Trump at a rally in Washington on January 6, 2021.
Some Texas people say the political obituary has already been written for the Bush family and now sees Bush, a land commissioner, as the last flicker embers, but his ancestors are fascinated. Almost none.
“Daddy Bush was great, great, great,” said Carolyn Wrightfoot, a member of the daughters of the Republic of Texas, about Mr Bush’s grandfather.However, the organization criticized George P. Bush’s move as a land commissioner. Handling of Alamo in San Antonio.. The establishment of the Bush family and the party “is trying to squeeze him into our throat because of his Latin heritage,” Wrightfoot said.
Mr. Bush may still win the spill because of all that family importance may have diminished among Texas Republicans. A This month’s vote Paxton’s approval rating was less than 50 percent, and Bush was chasing him with just a few percentage points. Donors have invested new money in Bush’s campaign in the final stages, hoping to push Bush up.
Bush will refine and target attacks on Paxton in recent weeks after internal investigations into his campaign suggest that previous efforts have hurt his position with Paxton. It was made. And Mr Bush proudly summoned his family. Political advertising for closing messages And while talking to an audience who may not be impressed with Bush’s name.
“It’s all about ethics,” Bush told a gathering of Republican women this month in the fast-growing town of Argyle, primarily on the outskirts of Fort Worth. “When people say that the last thing we need is another bush, my answer is exactly when we need a bush.”
When he attacked the state, Mr. Bush, 46, was always asked about his relatives, talked about some of their favorite memories, or challenged to repeat his loyalty to Mr. Trump.
After the event in Argyle, a man in a cowboy hat was waiting outside for Mr. Bush to appear, allowing him to confront the candidate.
“Do you support Republican candidates, even if it’s Trump in 2024?” Asked the man.
“Yes, no, I’ll support him again,” Bush replied, wearing black cowboy boots with White House stickers and walking towards the car. His uncle’s ranch in Crawford, Texas.. “But I know who will come out.”
George P. Bush was a Democrat and Paxton at an event at a Republican club in Houston down the road from an apartment occupied by George W. Bush in an area where George W. Bush was representing Congress. He gave a speech to attack him. He promised to strengthen the state border with Mexico and deal with the increasing murder rate in Houston. He opened the floor to the question, but got comments to get started.
“For me, you have all the manners of Governor Bush, so I enjoyed seeing you speak,” the man told him to laugh in the room. “Your hands are like” Saturday Night Live “. “
Another attendee also mentioned his family. “I’ve heard people say they’re tired of the Bush dynasty and don’t intend to vote for you,” club member Doug Smith reiterated some of the room’s opinions. I did. “How do you deal with those people?”
“I never run away from being Bush. I love my family,” he said. Most of the crowd applauded.
Living in Texas exposes you to the ubiquity of Bush, whose family is named by the airports, roads and schools from Houston to Dallas to Midland. Both Presidents Bush have a presidential library in the state. Houston also has a dog run named after George P. Bush’s grandmother Barbara Bush’s dog companion. Who died in 2018..
Mr. Bush has been receiving national attention since he was a child and has been hearing about his bright political future for decades. “The Republican National Convention doubles as a dress rehearsal for a man who the Republicans are talking about as an up-and-coming heir to Bush’s legacy.” The Baltimore Sun wrote about him in 2000Calling him a “lump” that can put a “passion for compassionate conservatism”.
But that’s not the message Republicans want to hear right now, said Texas political consultants, donors, and observers.
Brandon Rottinghaus, a professor of political science at the University of Houston, said: “The Republican base changed so rapidly that many were left without chairs when the music stopped. Bush is a good example.”
Bush’s longtime friend Jay Zydman said he believed that these shifts masked dissatisfaction with the party’s direction. “Currently, because of Donald Trump, the state lacks political courage,” he said. “I think Americans and the Texans are hungry to return to their former politics.”
Bush, who grew up in Florida, emphasizes his relationship with Texas when he runs the campaign. Born in Houston, he is a college student at Rice University and has a career as a state lawyer. Bush said in an interview that he understood his family’s legacy as something in Texas and “typically American and patriotic.”
“My role is to close the wounds of the past,” Bush said. “I’m focusing on areas I can control, not areas I can’t control, because it’s useless.”
Mr. Bush has taken a strong position in appealing to the Republican primary on issues such as race and gender education at school. With regard to immigration, he urged Texas to formally call the passage of the US Constitution, which refers to “aggression.” The nation is in control of the power of war And the moves that Mr. Paxton and Governor Greg Abbott have avoided so far. He”Fraud and irregularityIn the 2020 election, he didn’t think it would change the outcome.
He asked Mr. Paxton to discuss the issue, but the two did not share the stage during the campaign. Bush contrasts the willingness to answer questions from reporters and a variety of audiences with Paxton’s practice of holding news conferences rarely and asking challenging questions.
Mr. Paxton’s campaign declined the request for an interview.
“Texas voters have revealed that they are fed up with the Bush dynasty and the RINO founding donor who plays Kingmaker in Texas politics,” said Kimi Hubbard, a spokeswoman for the Paxton campaign. Said using an acronym meaning “only Republican names.”
In an interview with the New York Times, Bush was careful not to question the Republican changes that made his candidacy more difficult. He said the party’s voters’ concerns were about the same as when they first ran for the land commission in the 2014 election. “My family concerns, crime concerns, border guards”.
Did voters’ feelings about the Bush dynasty hurt him? “I wouldn’t say that,” he said. “I won.”
A significant number of Republicans investigated in Texas say they wouldn’t support Mr Bush. For the background of his family.. But his pedigree is not just a responsibility.
In this month’s poll by The Dallas Morning News and the University of Texas at Tyler, people planning to vote for the Attorney General’s main vote were asked what they liked about the candidates they chose. .. One of the biggest factors mentioned by Paxton’s supporters was that he wasn’t Bush. However, about the same percentage of Mr. Bush’s supporters said he was particularly attracted to him because he was Bush.
Mr. Bush drew financial support from his family network. This includes six-digit checks from longtime Bush supporters and over $ 100,000 directly from his uncle George W. Bush.
A week before the final vote, outside of the grandfather’s old parliamentary district’s early voting site in Houston, the name of Mr. Bush’s family emerged heavily in favor of and against Republican voters.
“We support George P,” said 50-year-old Julie Treadwell, who just voted for her 18-year-old daughter. “We want to go back to that,” she said of his family and what they represented to her: “a more equal and mediocre conservative Republican.”
After hearing Mr. Treadwell’s remarks, 59-year-old Dara Leiden waited for him to walk towards his car before explaining his opinion.
“I was all for George Bush, dad and son, but now I feel at Bush that it’s more about power than people,” Leiden said. She voted for Mr Paxton in the primary and supported him in the first round of the primary, she said.
“Buds?” She added. “finished.”