Jeb Bush praised Trump’s Supreme Court picks but criticized his conduct in a new interview.
On the topic of “setting an example to which younger people can aspire,” Bush gave President Trump a “F.”
Last year, Jeb called for a Republican to challenge Trump in the 2020 election.
Speaking to David Axelrod last March, Bush said Republicans “ought to be a given a choice” in 2020.
“I think someone should run. Just because Republicans ought to be given a choice,” Bush told Axelrod.
Bush spoke Monday to an audience of several hundred investors in Hollywood at a conference sponsored by the financial firm Noble Capital Markets of Boca Raton. During a speech and onstage interview with author Brant Pinvidic, Bush likened the role of the president to part prime minister, part king.
As for such “kingly’ duties as setting an example to which younger people can aspire, Bush found the president deficient.
“The duties say if you can work hard and play by the rules you can be just like him … that’s an ‘F,’” Bush said. “That’s an important part of this, to be admired by someone that you look up to. This president doesn’t achieve that.”
Bush, whom Trump once called an “a——-” and “Sleepy Jeb” on the campaign trail, was asked whether he could have won the 2016 Republican presidential nomination given all that he knows now.
“Trump is a master of reality TV and I give him credit … he knows how to do this,” Bush replied. “He knows how to keep the attention on him. This is not part of my DNA. I was like a fish out of water.”
But could he have won the nomination? Pinvidic asked.
“I don’t know. I don’t know,” Bush said before joking: “I probably could have knee-capped the guy.”