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Jeb Bush Is Thinking About Running for His Brother's Old Job

It's official: Dubya's brother has "decided to actively explore the possibility" of becoming the third Bush in as many decades to run the country.

by Allie Conti
Dec 16 2014, 5:18pm

Photo via the World Affairs Council of Philadelphia on Flickr

Americans who secretly want the country to be run by a small group of extremely powerful families—like Game of Thrones but with less incest and brutal executions—can rejoice: Jeb Bush, brother of George, son of a different George, and the former governor of Florida, is officially thinking about running for president.

Just before 10 AM today, Bush posted a holiday greeting on his Facebook page. He announced that over Thanksgiving, he spent time with family discussing the future of the country, as one does. "As a result of these conversations and thoughtful consideration of the kind of strong leadership I think America needs," he wrote, "I have decided to actively explore the possibility of running for President of the United States."

This wasn't exactly shocking: Rumors about a Bush 2016 campaign date as far back as 2012, and this April CBS News reported that the Republican said he was "digesting" the idea of throwing his hat in the ring. But that was at a closed-door fundraiser in New York; this is the first time he's spoken directly to the public about a bid, and now he's laying out a concrete plan for his next steps.

"In January, I also plan to establish a Leadership PAC that will help me facilitate conversations with citizens across America to discuss the most critical challenges facing our exceptional nation," Bush wrote on Facebook. "The PAC's purpose will be to support leaders, ideas and policies that will expand opportunity and prosperity for all Americans.

Though Bush hasn't committed to running yet, the idea of his campaign has already made waves in the political world, with one former Mitt Romney staffer saying that if Bush runs, the failed Republican 2012 nominee will stay out of the race, as the two men are both relative moderates.

Bush is the only Republican governor in Florida to ever serve two full terms, and he left office with an approval rating of higher than 60 percent. The Cato Institute, a libertarian think tank, remembers him as a "prolific tax cutter" who "let spending rise quickly toward the end of his tenure," which makes his record similar to his brother's.

The Democrats, naturally, are not fans. "I don't know what the difference is between 'thinking about' running and 'actively exploring' running, but I suspect it has a lot to do with keeping his name in the news," Democratic National Committee Communications Director Mo Elleithee said in a statement. "However you see it, there's no parsing this simple fact: Jeb Bush has fully embraced the failed economic agenda that benefits only a select few at the expense of the middle class. That's not going to change no matter how many ways he says he may run."

The Democrats have their own dynastic candidate in frontrunner Hilary Clinton (who has yet to officially announce her candidacy, but come on), though she will be challenged by Jim Webb and possibly—in a progressive fantasy world at least—Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders. Other GOP candidates will presumably include Rand Paul, Ted Cruz, neurosurgeon Ben Carson, and a bunch of white guys.

Follow Allie Conti on Twitter.