According to the Washington Post, Jeb Bush has until Halloween to clean up his act, or his donors will be bailing for greener, less moderate, possibly less entitled pastures.
Jeb Bush has been something of a non-entity through the first leg of the 2016 campaign. He came in assuming that the waters of the GOP pool would simply part to allow him to walk easily into the nomination, as though he were some sort of second coming of Mitt Romney, and not the third coming of the Bush dynasty. He’s run up against Donald Trump, no doubt, which makes it much harder to capture any breathing room even in debates, but Jeb has also failed to distinguish himself from his rivals, he’s been skipping fundraisers, and though he’s still cashing his checks, the people writing them are starting to speculate that they might have backed the wrong horse – so they’ve reportedly given Jeb an ultimatem.
Jeb Bush is entering a critical phase of his Republican presidential campaign, with top donors warning that the former Florida governor needs to demonstrate growth in the polls over the next month or face serious defections among supporters.
The warnings, expressed by numerous senior GOP fundraisers in recent days, come as Bush and an allied super PAC are in the early stages of an aggressive television ad campaign they say will help erase doubts about his viability…
The warnings from top donors come as Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker’s exit from the race refocused the battle within the GOP’s establishment wing as one between Bush and his former protege, Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.). Right now, the momentum appears to be behind Rubio, who has jumped ahead of Bush in most polls. At least a third of the bundlers who signed up to raise money for Walker have switched their allegiance to Rubio, while a smaller number have gone with Bush, according to people familiar with the discussions.
It’s time that candidates start dropping out. The next debate will hone the field down to ten, if they aren’t already honed themselves, picking only those who “look viable” to event organizers. That means its likely that forgettable candidates like Rick Santorum, George Pataki and Lindsey Graham will fall off the stage entirely. Bobby Jindal and Rand Paul may join them, as may Ben Carson. But like many who never gained traction but have enough name recognition to still attract campaign cash, Jeb Bush has a decision to make – either he anticipates a forthcoming spike (like Rubio, Cruz and Kasich, he’s due), or he admits defeat early and saves himself the time and trouble. After all, Cruz has him out-Republicaned. Rubio has him out-Floridianed and Kasich has him out-moderated.
Jeb Bush’s problem isn’t dissimilar from Hillary Clinton’s. Until now, he’s resisted making any active case for himself with voters, figuring that if you don’t know what Jeb Bush did in Florida, you’re not paying enough attention to vote. Instead, Jeb should know they only people who care to vote in a mid-term are politics-addicted weirdos who have already judged him unworthy. He’s not a bad guy; he’s just going out of his way to be a bad candidate.
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