Speculation has swirled this week around the possibility of Jeb Bush, the former Governor of Florida running for president in 2016. On Friday, the former governor made a plea for more bipartisanship in Washington, while hailing the dinner invitation by President Obama to a number of Republican Senators as a good start.
Using a tone that separated him from the harsh rhetoric of Republican contenders in 2012, Bush said the future of the Republican Party hinges on better cooperation between the two parties. He praised the work being done on immigration reform by the Senate, as well as the recent moves Obama has made.
His speech on Friday in California touched on education in energy and illegal immigration. Bush gave his speech in Simi Valley at the Presidential Library of Ronald Reagan. He spoke at great length about Washington’s toxic climate.
He paid tribute to former President Reagan for getting close to his adversaries, remarking on the friendship Reagan had with Tip O’Neil the former Democratic Speaker of the House. He said both men hated stalemates and that was refreshing if you use it in the context of what is taking place in Washington today.
Bush is not the first and will not be the last politician to call for more cooperation between the warring parties in Washington. However, even though Reagan was known for his attempts at bipartisanship, Washington was not anywhere near as polarized then as it is today under Obama or even as it was under Bush’s brother George W.
Bush also has had controversy follow him this week thanks to his new book that outlines his overhaul plan for immigration that includes no path to citizenship for the undocumented immigrants, just a path to legal status.