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Author Topic: John Ellis Bush  (Read 1451 times)
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« on: February 20, 2015, 04:50:33 AM »

Jeb adds to the quotable-Bush canon
By Dana Milbank

Jeb Bush was mere seconds into his speech Wednesday informing the world that he’s his “own man,” and not his brother or his dad, when he did something reminiscent of both. He flubbed his line.

“We definitely no longer inspire fear in our enemies,” the nominal front-runner for the Republican presidential nomination said at the start of his ballyhooed address. “The problem is perhaps best demonstrated by this administration’s approach to Iraq.”

Whoa! He’s going there — right into the failure that pretty much destroyed his brother’s presidency? Bush continued reading from his text, as if for the first time.

“We’ve had 35 years of experience with Iran,” he went on, then realized his earlier mistake. “Excuse me, Iran. Thirty-five years’ experience with Iran’s rulers.”

Dr. Freud would have been amused.

Bush leads in the early GOP 2016 polls because his name is Bush, but that name could bring about his downfall, as well, because his brother’s tenure is remembered for misery in Iraq and economic collapse. Try though he did to differentiate himself from George H.W. Bush and George W. Bush, John Ellis Bush’s delivery gave him away.

When he addressed the Chicago Council on Global Affairs luncheon at the Fairmont, he combined his father’s awkward oratory with his brother’s mangled syntax and malapropisms. Like his brother, he said “nucular” instead of “nuclear,” and he hunched over the lectern with both hands on it — but instead of exuding folksiness, as his brother does, he oozed discomfort.

A top priority, he explained, is “reforming a broken immigration system and turning it into an economic — a catalytic converter for sustained economic growth.”

Presumably he was reaching for “catalyst” but instead came up with an automotive emissions-control device.

“As we grow our presence by growing our ability to produce oil and gas,” Bush went on, “we also make it possible to lessen the dependency that Russia now has on top of Europe.”

Russia’s dependency on top of Europe? It was, in addition to being backward, a delightful echo of his brother’s belief that it is hard “to put food on your family.”

At another point, discussing NATO’s aggressive stance in the Baltics, Jeb explained that “I don’t know what the effect has been, because, you know, it’s really kind of hard to be out on the road, and I’m just a gladiator these days, so I don’t follow every little detail.”

Asked about the weakening of nation states in the Middle East, he admitted: “I don’t have a solution. I mean, I—I—I’ve read articles, you know, about whether the 1915 kind of breakout of the Middle East and how that no longer is a viable deal.”

Bush, eschewing teleprompter, read his speech quickly and, during the question time that followed, leaned forward in a chair, jacket buttoned and legs spread, swigging water with Marco Rubio’s gusto.

The former Florida governor recited his foreign policy credentials, such as opening a bank office in Venezuela. He touted a Latin American free-trade agreement and noted that “where Columba and I live is going to be right in the center of the universe of that free-trade agreement.”

He can see Cuba from his house!

Even the money line of his speech, that he’s his own man, received a distracting grace note when he said: “I love my brother. I love my dad. I actually love my mother as well — hope that’s okay.” (It’s unclear who had suggested otherwise.) “I grew up politically, I guess, in the ’80s,” asserted Bush, who turned 27 in 1980.

Bush mimicked some of his big brother’s bravado, using phrases such as “enemies of freedom” and “tighten the noose” and “take them out,” and he defended the surge in Iraq. But what brought him closest to his kin were the random oddities in his speech. He declared that “whoever created the terminology BRIC would have to change the name,” without explaining that BRIC referred to emerging economies Brazil, Russia, India and China.

At another point he had trouble coming up with the English name for “Plan Colombia” and explained, “Sometimes my mind switches, and I apologize.” He propounded the curious theory that “the more tepid the economic growth” the less likely NATO members are to “defend themselves” militarily. He said that with President Obama’s “pivot” to Asia, “the rest of the world wonders, am I the pivotee?” And he described the Islamic State leader as “the guy that’s the supreme leader, whatever his new title is, head of the caliphate.”

Bush admitted that his foreign policy was still in the training phase. “Look, the more I get into this stuff, there are some things [where] you just go, you know, ‘Holy schnikes.’ ”

If he keeps talking like this, Americans may say the same of him.


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« Reply #1 on: February 20, 2015, 05:03:14 AM »

I think Jeb 2008 was a little brighter and brilliant than the jeb we see today.

Maybe it's age, maybe it's just enjoying retirement.  Maybe he's smoking a little reefer (we all know it makes people a little duller), maybe it's meds or whatever.

Whatever the case, jeb was a bright mind in 2000, 2004, 2008, and even 2012.  Hearing him talk in 2015, he's certainly lost a step.  Doesn't mean he wouldn't do an okay job as prez... but if you take away the name and the suit, and I see this guy talking in a restaurant, I think he's a lifetime pothead.   *He admitted years of heavy weed use in the past*
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« Reply #2 on: February 20, 2015, 05:15:39 PM »

Jeb Bush's Secret Is Out
by Lev Raphael

Jeb Bush has been making candidate noises for awhile now and if you wondered what he might be like as a candidate or wanted insight into his character, he gave plenty this week.

He's lazy. And maybe not all that bright.

As The Washington Post reports, he just spoke at a Chicago Council on Global Affairs luncheon. So you'd think someone who wanted to be president, or was at least considering it, might have studied up on some foreign policy issues. Think again.

He made a bunch of verbal gaffes that might be due to nerves, though you'd expect a former governor would be used to public speaking. But it's his answers to questions, and a confession, that raised more serious concerns.

Asked about NATO's stance in the Baltic region, he said, "I don't know what the effect has been, because, you know, it's really kind of hard to be out on the road, and I'm just a gladiator these days, so I don't follow every little detail."

Asked about failed states in the Middle East, he came out with this gem, "I don't have a solution. I mean, I -- I -- I've read articles, you know, about whether the 1915 kind of breakout of the Middle East and how that no longer is a viable deal."

He admitted he was no foreign policy expert, in a bizarre way: "Look, the more I get into this stuff, there are some things [where] you just go, you know, 'Holy schnikes.' "

He's clearly not ready for prime time and is a lousy decision maker, too. Why show off his ignorance of foreign affairs at a foreign affairs luncheon? Unless he thinks his Bush name absolves him of having to do research or prepare with consultants. Which means he's got as scary a sense of entitlement as his brother did.


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« Reply #3 on: February 20, 2015, 05:25:05 PM »

Yeah, you cannot look at that face and tell me he doesn't smoke the reefer.  He is an admitted heavy user, for years, so you know he loved it, truly loved it.

He's been out of office, just enjoying the private sector for a while... dude looks like he likes to toke, which I don't have a problem with, as long as he doesn't drive.  He's aged quickly since being in office.



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« Reply #4 on: February 20, 2015, 10:33:51 PM »

"Lazy and not that bright"? Could anyone be lazier and dumber than obama? Lmao. Dudes got the ultimate part time job. I know grocery store bag boys who work more hours than he does. Lol. (Dead serious)
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« Reply #5 on: February 21, 2015, 06:23:31 AM »

"Lazy and not that bright"? Could anyone be lazier and dumber than obama? Lmao. Dudes got the ultimate part time job. I know grocery store bag boys who work more hours than he does. Lol. (Dead serious)

You are more than welcome to go back to the Bush/Cheney years... since they were so "productive"  Roll Eyes
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« Reply #6 on: February 21, 2015, 11:57:07 AM »

"Lazy and not that bright"? Could anyone be lazier and dumber than obama? Lmao. Dudes got the ultimate part time job. I know grocery store bag boys who work more hours than he does. Lol. (Dead serious)

of course

millions of people and you're at the top of the list
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« Reply #7 on: February 22, 2015, 06:49:31 PM »

Documents show the expensive tastes of Jeb Bush’s low-key wife
By Karen Tumulty and Alice Crites

In 1999, Columba Bush, the famously private wife of then-Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, was detained and fined by federal customs officials for misrepresenting the amount of clothing and jewelry she had bought while on a solo five-day shopping spree in Paris.

The incident left the Florida first lady deeply mortified and her husband politically chagrined. Jeb Bush said the first lady had misled customs officials because she did not want him to know that she had spent about $19,000 on the trip.

“The embarrassment I felt made me ashamed to face my family and friends,” Columba Bush said in a July 1999 speech to the Central Florida Make-a-Wish Foundation, not long after the incident. “It was the worst feeling I’ve ever had in my life.”

The ordeal did not stop her from spending freely, however. Less than a year later, she took out a loan to buy $42,311.70 worth of jewelry on a single day, according to records filed with the state of Florida by Mayors Jewelers.

That purchase was part of a pattern by Columba Bush of borrowing to buy tens of thousands of dollars of jewelry at a time from the South Florida store over a 14-year period.
Documentation available online, which does not include the details of two transactions made less than six weeks apart in 1995, shows that she spent a total of more than $90,000 at the store.

Jeb Bush’s political team insisted that her tastes and shopping habits should not be an issue. “Mrs. Bush bought jewelry from time to time from Mayors Jewelers over the years. Though not required to be reported, these purchases in 2000 were included as accounts payable on Governor Bush’s financial disclosure that year, and paid off the next,” Bush spokeswoman Kristy Campbell said by e-mail.

Campbell also said that the governor was “aware she made purchases from time to time.”

That kind of spending, though well within his means, may present a challenge for Jeb Bush as he prepares for a presidential run with a message that the playing field between rich and poor is not fair or level.

In recent years, candidates in both parties have had to answer questions about high-dollar transactions by themselves and their family members, whether a $400 haircut for John Edwards, six-figure speaking fees for Hillary Rodham Clinton, or the number of homes and cars Mitt Romney owned.

While spouses are not on the ballot, they too find their lifestyles the focus of curiosity — and, frequently, partisan attack. Americans view a candidate’s family as an indicator of how closely connected he or she is to average people.

In the 2012 campaign, Romney’s wife, Ann, was mocked for her horse, and when she wore a $990 shirt, it was widely noted. First lady Michelle Obama drew fire for wearing a pair of sneakers that cost upward of $500 when she went to bag groceries at a food bank in 2009.

Jeb Bush’s wife shuns the spotlight that follows the prominent family into which she married 41 years ago. She rarely grants interviews, and published profiles describe her as a quiet homebody who paints and does needlepoint, is passionate about her charity work, and has lunches by herself at modest restaurants.

Her reluctance to return to public life was seen as a major factor in her husband’s decision on whether to run for the 2016 Republican nomination. Many were surprised in October when Jeb Bush told the Associated Press that his wife was “supportive” of the idea.

In December, Bush announced that he was actively exploring a presidential bid. At this point, he is mounting a fundraising effort that far outpaces those of any of his potential rivals.
A longtime customer

During Bush’s two terms as governor, from 1999 to 2007, the first lady maintained a low profile, living much of the time in their Miami-area home rather than in the state capital, Tallahassee.

She was a long-standing customer of Mayors, shopping at one of its locations, since closed, in the Miami suburb of Sunrise.

Mayors spokesman Francis Guindon declined to provide information about Columba Bush’s purchases, saying the store keeps its clients’ information confidential.

Uniform Commercial Code forms filed by the store with the Florida secretary of state’s office on May 3, 2000, indicate that Mayors arranged a loan under which Columba Bush bought four items. They were: a $25,600 pair of diamond stud earrings set in platinum; an 18-karat white-gold and diamond bracelet by the Italian designer Bulgari, priced at $10,500; an 18-karat white-gold and diamond necklace, costing $3,200; and another pair of diamond earrings, for $3,300. The records indicate that she received discounts and price adjustments totalling $2,780 and paid $2,491.70 in sales tax.

That was one of at least five such loans made by the store to Columba Bush between 1995 and 2009. The most recent was for an $11,700 Rolex watch and a $5,900 pair of earrings.

While the 2000 purchase listed the governor’s mansion as her home address, documents suggest that, on at least one earlier occasion, Columba Bush wanted the paperwork sent to a postal box.

In 1997, when she bought a Roman coin necklace for $15,000 and a $16,600 Rolex watch studded with diamonds, she listed as her mailing address one that is currently used by a UPS Store in Miami. At the time, the shipping facility operated under the name Mail Boxes Etc.

That purchase came at a moment when the Bushes were receiving intense public attention. In early 1997, Jeb Bush indicated that he planned to run for governor the following year. It was his second bid for the office, after a narrow loss in 1994.
Spouses under scrutiny

There is no job description for a first lady, on either a state or a national level. The spouse, however, has always been regarded as a window into the officeholder.

And through history, their lifestyles have often come under special scrutiny. Mary Todd Lincoln was known as a compulsive shopper who wore $2,000 dresses and once told a friend: “I must dress in costly materials. The President glances at my rich dresses and is happy to believe that the few hundred dollars that I obtain from him supply all my wants.” She confided that she hoped Abraham Lincoln would run for reelection so that he would continue to be too busy to take note of the bills.

Columba Bush’s mother-in-law, Barbara Bush, on the other hand, was seen as a down-to-Earth contrast with her glamorous, free-spending predecessor, Nancy Reagan. The elder Mrs. Bush, though from a privileged background, made sure it was known that her signature triple-strand pearls were fake.

More recently, former House speaker Newt Gingrich’s six-figure jewelry gifts to his wife from Tiffany & Co.caused a flap when they were disclosed during his 2012 presidential bid.

Having enormous wealth does not allay the criticism and can even intensify it, particularly for candidates who seem tone-deaf to how far removed they are from the struggles of ordinary Americans.

Already during the run-up to the 2016 election, former first lady and secretary of state Hillary Clinton, the leading potential contender for the Democrats, has been criticized for her huge speaking fees. She also was ridiculed for her contention that she and her husband were “dead broke” when they left the White House.

Columba Bush, who is from Mexico, holds special interest as a potential first lady because she would be the first Latina in that role and only the second first lady born in a foreign country.

Yet she has not had much of a public presence, preferring her privacy and working for such causes as fighting substance abuse and promoting arts education.

“She would trade 20 society galas for one juicy Spanish soap opera savored in the comfort of her South Dade County home,” the Miami Herald wrote of Columba Bush in 1989, shortly after her father-in-law, George H.W. Bush, was inaugurated as president.

Nor has the couple been known for an ostentatious personal lifestyle, despite their wealth. “Jeb Bush may have made millions in real estate, but it doesn’t show in his own house. The Bushes live in Pinecrest, a neighborhood of modest, ’70s-style ranch homes,” the St. Petersburg Times wrote of them a few weeks before his 1998 election. (The Bushes now live in nearby Coral Gables, in a four-bedroom townhouse purchased for $1.3 million in 2012.)
‘Between her and me’

After Columba Bush was forced to pay $4,100 in fines and duties for the purchases she had tried to slip past customs agents at Atlanta’s Hartsfield International Airport, the governor said her shopping habits were no one else’s business.

“It is a lot of money. But look, that’s between her and me,” he said. The episode happened at a particularly sensitive moment, because Jeb Bush’s brother George, the governor of Texas, was making the first of his two successful bids for the White House.

There is no doubt that Jeb and Columba Bush could cover their bills, including the big one she ran up during his governorship.

His financial disclosure form showed that he held $2.3 million in assets in 2000. His income was $202,616, of which $117,593 came from his gubernatorial salary and the remainder as dividends, capital gains and interest from a trust.

He listed unspecified “household bills and other accounts payable” of $73,000. That was higher than the $10,000 in debt reported the previous year and the $18,000 in 2001, supporting the Bush spokeswoman’s contention that the loan was fully disclosed.

That there is a paper trail of some of Columba Bush’s purchases reflects a practice that is not unusual in cases where a person obtains expensive goods without paying cash for them, said Charles W. Mooney Jr., a University of Pennsylvania Law School professor who specializes in commercial law.

The seller often files a “financing statement” under the Uniform Commercial Code to make sure he or she has the right to reclaim the goods if the debtor goes bankrupt or sells the items to another party without paying off the loan.

“Even prominent people go broke. They don’t want to extend unsecured credit,” Mooney said.

Guindon, the Mayors spokesman, added: “Many of our customers choose to take advantage of our various credit offerings. We offer competitive rates and terms which often outperform that of credit card companies, for example, interest-free plans. Customers are subject to credit approval, of course.”


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« Reply #8 on: February 22, 2015, 07:18:11 PM »

Hey Bay. How come you don't provide links to these stories? It's just a copy and paste from some unknown publication.
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« Reply #9 on: March 18, 2015, 05:04:17 PM »

Jeb Bush’s tie to fugitive goes against business-savvy image he promotes
By Tom Hamburger and Robert O'Harrow Jr.

Jeb Bush was a young man building a real-estate business in Miami in 1985 when a health-care entrepreneur named Miguel Recarey Jr. hired him to help locate office space in South Florida.

Bush, then the son of the vice president, later provided another service: opening doors in Washington, where Recarey had mounted an aggressive lobbying effort for a waiver from Medicare rules that would allow his fast-growing company to continue to expand.

Recarey got what he wanted. But two years later, the firm, International Medical Centers, was shut down as regulators searched for millions in missing federal funds. Facing charges of bribery and bilking Medicare, Recarey fled the country to avoid prosecution. He remains a fugitive in Spain, where a court denied U.S. requests for extradition.

The Recarey case illustrates aspects of Bush’s business record that are likely to resurface as he moves closer to a campaign for president. Time and again, he benefited from his family name and connections to land a consulting deal or board membership, sometimes doing business with people and companies who would later run afoul of the law.

In the case of Recarey, Bush has said over the years that he “made one call” to a mid-level official to seek a fair deal for a Florida businessman.

But new interviews and a review of congressional testimony show that Bush engaged in multiple calls on Recarey’s behalf to senior administration officials — and that his advocacy made a difference.

One recipient of Bush’s outreach on behalf of Recarey, C. McClain Haddow, then the chief of staff to then-Health and Human Services Secretary Margaret Heckler, told The Washington Post that hearing from the vice president’s son “certainly altered the trajectory of the decision.”

Transcripts from a 1987 congressional inquiry show that another HHS official, Kevin Moley, who was a Bush family friend, became concerned when he heard Bush was helping Recarey.

“I said, ‘Jeb, this is something, you know, you probably don’t want to be involved in,’” Moley said during his sworn testimony. “And he said, ‘Kevin, I only want to make sure that Mike Recarey gets a fair hearing.’ ”

Bush declined to be interviewed. His spokeswoman, Kristy Campbell, said that Moley was the only person Bush remembered contacting at HHS regarding the Recarey case.

“As Governor Bush has said multiple times, he only recollects making a call to Mr. Moley and simply asking for a fair shake for Mr. Recarey as other Florida leaders did as well. It is unfortunate that [Recarey] turned out to be a bad actor,” Campbell said.

Campbell added that Bush “has always operated with the highest level of integrity throughout his business career.”

Bush’s work with Recarey was one early element in what would become a sprawling business portfolio that he developed before and after his eight years as governor.

He was involved in dozens of businesses, starting in real estate in the 1980s when he joined forces with a politically connected developer, Armando Codina. Bush later established a lucrative consulting practice, becoming part-owner of a professional football team, sitting on corporate boards and, most recently, launching a successful Florida-based investment partnership.

Bush has severed ties with his business interests in recent months as he turns his attention back to politics. He has long touted his business experience as a political asset.

But his business résumé also includes some ventures that could provoke criticism on the national stage, as some did during his past Florida campaigns.

In one case, Bush reportedly advocated for a federal loan guarantee for a Miami contractor later convicted of fraud in applying for the loan, though Bush later said he did not recall doing so. He became a board member and consultant to a Florida-based manufacturer whose two top officers are now serving federal prison sentences for defrauding investors and the U.S. government. And he worked with another Florida firm investigated by the FBI for allegedly bribing Nigerian officials as part of a plan to sell water pumps that was underwritten by the Export-Import Bank of the United States.

Codina, who served as an early business mentor for Bush, said Bush’s record would hold up well against any competitor. “Given the thousands and thousands of leasing deals that Bush Realty was involved in, the record for having only a few clients who ultimately turned out to be less than truthful is remarkable, and that record would compare favorably with any firm in this business either in Miami or another city,” Codina said in an e-mail exchange with The Washington Post.

Recarey stood out even in the excesses of Miami’s go-go 1980s. Active in Florida’s anti-Castro community, he was known for having extraordinary charm and a volatile temper. He collected assault rifles, traveled with heavy security and had his office wired with sophisticated eavesdropping equipment. He had a checkered past that included jail time for an income tax evasion conviction in the 1970s. He bragged about his ties to Florida crime boss Santo Trafficante Jr.

By the mid-1980s, Recarey’s firm, IMC, needed more office space — and he approached the real-estate brokerage owned by Bush and Codina.

IMC was booming in large part from Medicare-funded business that had soared as a result of the firm’s participation in a federal pilot project to study whether health maintenance organizations could reduce the cost of Medicare. The use of HMOs had been embraced by the market-oriented Reagan-Bush administration.

But IMC’s growth was threatened by federal rules requiring firms to get special waivers if more than half of their business came from Medicare patients.

By 1985, Recarey was seeking help from Washington. Almost 8 in 10 IMC patients were then on Medicare, and a temporary waiver granted to the firm three years earlier was scheduled to expire. Another waiver was also needed for Recarey to accomplish his goals of expanding the company’s geographic reach.

Career HHS staffers opposed IMC’s request, in part because doctors and patients had complained about the company’s management and the quality of care it provided.

To press his case with the agency, Recarey hired prominent Republican lobbyists in Washington, including former White House adviser Lyn guy and Reagan campaign manager John Sears, congressional testimony and interviews show. Their effort was intense and involved calls and meetings with people at the White House and HHS.

Recarey also sought help from Bush, whom he had hired for a $75,000 fee for the real-estate search.

Bush’s ties to Recarey came up repeatedly during a hearing in the House Subcommittee on Operations in December 1987, when lawmakers examined the collapse of IMC, then the largest Medicare scandal ever.

Haddow and Moley both testified under oath that they spoke with Bush about Recarey’s waiver request.

Haddow told the committee that Bush contacted Heckler and “called me at Ms. Heckler’s request at one point on this issue.”

“Ms. Heckler’s description of it and the reason why she thought it was important, I thought were blatantly political,” Haddow said in his sworn testimony.

In a recent interview, Haddow recalled that Heckler, a former Republican member of Congress from Massachusetts, had been excited to receive the call from the son of George H.W. Bush, who was widely seen as the GOP’s next presidential nominee.

“It was her belief she would be in the running to be vice president,” Haddow said.

Haddow eventually left the government and, for several months, worked as an IMC consultant. Haddow pleaded guilty to an unrelated conflict of interest charge while at HHS and was sentenced to several months in prison for launching a nonprofit foundation with ties to HHS that employed his wife.

Moley testified that he heard Bush had made inquiries on behalf of Recarey, a development that “later led me to call Jeb and find out what was up.”

Moley later said in interviews that Heckler never told him about a call from Bush and that he felt Bush probably did not call her. Moley said he heard about Bush’s interest in IMC from Ron Kaufman, another Republican who has also served as an adviser to Bush’s father.

Kaufman told The Post he does not recall any conversation with Bush or Moley about the Recarey issue.

Heckler, now 84, said in a 2012 Huffington Post interview that Bush had called her.

Reached recently by The Washington Post, Heckler said she wanted time to consider the matter because her memory was fuzzy. She then did not respond to follow-up requests.

In his campaigns for governor, Bush played down his association with Recarey. He told the St. Petersburg Times in 1993 that “this issue has been blown out of proportion way beyond what is fair. I made one call.”

Bush also said that he was proud of his efforts to use his familiarity with Washington to benefit private citizens who needed help.

“I do this for a lot of people. I did it for Democrats, I did it for Republicans,” he told the St. Petersburg Times. “Government, is a big complex beast.”

Recarey, now working as a technology executive in Madrid, has said little over the years about his involvement with Bush. He did not follow through on an agreement to conduct an interview with The Post.
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« Reply #10 on: March 19, 2015, 04:59:55 AM »

A Savings and Loan Bailout, and Bush's Son Jeb
By JEFF GERTH
Published: October 14, 1990

WASHINGTON, Oct. 13— After Jeb Bush, a son of the President, and a partner bought a Miami office building using money an associate had borrowed from a local savings and loan, the Federal Government wound up repaying most of the loan.

The savings institution became insolvent, and the Government paid more than $4 million to make good the loan as part of the bailout of the savings industry. Mr. Bush and his partner negotiated a settlement with regulators in which they repaid $505,000 and retained control of the building. While they still have a $7 million mortgage to pay on that property, the settlement with the Government lifted from their backs a $4.565 million second mortgage.

There is no evidence that Mr. Bush or his partner improperly influenced the settlement process. Mr. Bush, in an interview, said he was a ''victim of circumstance'' and had no involvement in the settlement talks.

Mr. Bush invited a reporter to come to Miami to review the partnership's records. ''We have nothing to fear or hide about the transaction,'' he said.

Making Good on Bad Loans

While the complex loan arrangement does not involve allegations of criminal behavior, it stands as an illustration of the poor lending practices of savings institutions that led the industry into desperate straits. The deal also illustrates how the Government has had to absorb a large portion of the thousands of bad loans that were made by savings institutions that failed in 1988. The rescue of these institutions will cost $70 billion.

The Government's repayment of the loan used by Mr. Bush and his partner was part of the bailout program approved by Congress, in which the Government guaranteed buyers of ailing institutions that it would make good on bad loans that had been made by those institutions. Had the Government not made such guarantees, it would have had trouble finding buyers for the institutions and would have had to pay off the depositors.

The loan was made by Broward Federal Savings and Loan in Sunrise, Fla., which became insolvent in 1988 because of what regulators said were poor lending practices on commercial loans in the mid-1980's. The cost of cleaning up Broward Federal has been estimated at $285 million.

Arrangement Is Defended

Federal officials defended the Government's previously undisclosed agreement with Mr. Bush and his associates, saying it was the best settlement available because of the weakened commercial real estate market in Miami and because the loan was secured by a risky second mortgage. They said no preferential treatment had been accorded the President's 37-year-old son and his partner.

When the office building was reappraised to reflect the decline in commercial real estate in the Miami area, Federal regulators concluded that it made sense to let the owners keep the building because its value was less than its first mortgage.

Evaluating the settlement is difficult, because crucial papers, including property appraisals, are not public documents. And a lawsuit about the complex loan arrangement, which might have resolved or at least provided a public discussion of various critical issues, was settled out of court.

History of a Deal

Debt Plan Causes Misunderstanding

In a series of interviews in their Miami office, Mr. Bush and his partner, Armando Codina, said the lengthy legal and regulatory process had cost them money, including Federal income taxes they are paying on the forgiven debt.

The two men attributed their problems to the failure of an associate, J. Edward Houston, to join them as an investor, as they had hoped. Instead Mr. Houston's company, the owner of another savings and loan, agreed to lend Mr. Bush and Mr. Codina the $4.565 million and borrowed the money from Broward Federal.

''The intention was to be an equity investment; instead he took a second mortgage and then at the last moment he borrowed the money from another institution,'' Mr. Bush said.

Jeb Bush's dealings in Miami are not related to those of his brother Neil, who was a director of the Silverado Banking, Savings and Loan Association in Denver. Neil Bush, who is 35, defended himself last month in Denver on civil charges by the Government that he acted improperly in his role as a director of Silverado, which failed in 1988 after making questionable loans, including some to Neil Bush's business associates.

An Active Republican

Jeb Bush has been prominent in Florida Republican politics and is state chairman of the re-election campaign of Gov. Bob Martinez. But his involvement in the complicated loan arrangement has gone unnoticed.

Mr. Bush's name is mentioned in the three volumes of records of a 1987 lawsuit filed by Broward Federal against the recipients of the loan proceeds, including a partnership owned by Mr. Bush and Mr. Codina.

According to the lawsuit, the loan transaction goes back to 1983, when Mr. Codina, a developer, obtained an option to buy a building at 1390 Brickell Avenue, the center of Miami's downtown financial district. Mr. Codina later assigned the option to a partnership, 1390 Brickell, of which he owned 80 percent and Mr. Bush the rest.

Mr. Bush is involved in the real estate business with Mr. Codina through a series of partnerships and corporations, under the umbrella of the Codina Bush Group. The Brickell Avenue building is managed by one of Mr. Bush's real estate companies.

Link to Savings Institution

Also in 1983, the J. E. Houston Financial Group, a company headed by Mr. Houston, a former Fort Lauderdale banker, acquired a small savings and loan, South Florida Savings. Mr. Houston became the president of the institution, rapidly expanded it and eventually moved its headquarters to a floor of plush offices at the five-story building at 1390 Brickell Avenue.

Mr. Bush, Mr. Codina and Mr. Houston's company were originally going to acquire the building together, the Bush-Codina partnership argued in court. Mr. Codina said all the parties expected to build a much bigger building on the land.

But one lawyer involved in the transaction said the planned investment by the Houston group had never been approved by Federal regulators, who would have had to approve any real estate transactions involving an insured savings and loan and an affiliated entity, like the Houston company.

Acquiring an Option

Instead of making the cash investment, Mr. Houston's company lent the Bush-Codina partnership $4.565 million and obtained a second mortgage on the building and an option to acquire half the partnership. Mr. Houston took that second mortgage, but not the option, and assigned it to Broward Federal as collateral for its loan. By retaining the option, Mr. Houston's company had the right to be consulted before the building could be disposed of.

''We didn't intend to get involved with a savings and loan,'' Mr. Bush said.

Mr. Houston never exercised his option to buy half the partnership and has a different view of the transaction, seeing it as a deal that turned sour for all parties. In an interview, he said, ''It was not my understanding that I was to convert into equity.'' He added, ''Both sides were unsatisfied, which is a sign of an arm's-length deal.''

The Money Flow

$11.5 Million Debt On $9 Million Sale

The deal closed on Feb. 1, 1985, and the proceeds of the Broward Federal loan passed through Mr. Houston's company to the partnership, records show. That same day the 1390 Brickell partnership purchased the office building for $9 million, according to public records.

As part of the acquisition, the partnership secured a first mortgage of $7 million from an insurance company. That and the $4.565 million loan provided $11.565 million. In addition to the $9 million sale price, the money was used for improvements costing $1.7 million and the establishment of reserve accounts of $1.16 million, Mr. Codina said.

His Role in Partnership

IntrAmerica Investments, a company controlled by Mr. Codina, is the general partner of the 1390 Brickell partnership. Court records show that Mr. Bush signed various documents in 1985 and 1986 as president of IntrAmerica. Mr. Bush said he had been active in getting the building leased but had not been involved in the subsequent litigation or settlement negotiations.

Broward Federal began the litigation in 1987, two days after regulators placed South Florida Savings, Mr. Houston's institution, into receivership. Contending that its loan to Mr. Houston's corporation was in default, Broward Federal sued the corporation and Mr. Houston, who had personally guaranteed the loan, and the Bush-Codina partnership, whose note Mr. Houston had pledged to Broward as collateral for its loan.

Seeking to protect the collateral it held on the defaulted loan, Broward Federal asked the court to declare it the owner of the partnership's second mortgage note. That note had been pledged to Broward along with the income from the building and a reserve account as collateral for the Houston note.

Disputing Who Should Pay

For two years, claims and counterclaims flew over who should pay back the $4.565 million. The 1390 Brickell partnership argued that Mr. Houston or his company should pay. Mr. Houston argued that Broward Federal, having attached the partnership's note, should seek repayment from the partnership.

The lawsuit was twice set for trial, but the case was settled out of court under the auspices of Federal regulators, who were authorized to step in because of a Dec. 31, 1988, agreement under which Broward Federal's assets and liabilities were sold, under Government supervision, to California Federal Bank, a Los Angeles savings and loan.

The Negotiations

$7 Million Mortgage Derails One Accord

The agreement, like most of the other 1988 savings and loan deals, called for the Government to guarantee any loss experienced by the California institution in taking over Broward's affairs. In addition, the Government was obligated to pay the acquiring institution's costs in managing the loans and any litigation to resolve them.

In a settlement agreement dated March 10, 1989, California Federal and the 1390 Brickell partnership agreed that the partnership would relinquish ownership of the building and that Mr. Codina would turn over his option on a nearby property. It also required the Bush-Codina partnership to pay at least $745,000, mostly the balance in an interest reserve account set up as part of the loan.

This settlement was rejected by the Government because it ''didn't make sense economically'' since whoever owned the building was liable for the $7 million first mortgage, said Dan Griffin, an official of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation who supervised the negotiations.

Revising an Appraisal

Mr. Griffin said the office building had originally been appraised at $9.5 million but that appraisals in the first half of 1989 reduced the appraised value to no more than $6.5 million. Thus, the regulators concluded that it would be better to let the owners keep the property rather than have the Government take over a $6.5 million building that carried $7 million in mortgage debt.

The new apprasials were ordered because regulators felt the first appraisal was outdated given the changes in Miami's real estate market. The F.D.I.C. declined to release the appraisals or the names of the companies that did them.

Mr. Griffin of the F.D.I.C. said the settlement delays ''had nothing to do with Jeb Bush'' but were ''because of the size of the write-off and the disparity of the appraisals.'' 10 Cents on the Dollar Charles A. Fulton, a senior lawyer at the F.D.I.C. who was involved in the negotiations, said a search by lawyers had concluded there was little legal or financial leverage to recover anything beyond 10 cents on the dollar, in part because the search found that Mr. Houston had few recoverable assets.

Mr. Griffin said the recovery rate of 10 cents on the dollar was about average for second mortgages like the one made by Broward Federal.

After the settlement was rejected by Federal regulators in June, the Codina-Bush partnership tried to settle its debt, starting with an offer of about $325,000. That was rejected, Mr. Fulton and Mr. Griffin said.

The Settlement

Leftover Money Is Used for Payment

About the same time, the reserve account, then the focus of the negotiations and the ultimate source of most of what the Government recovered, was used by Mr. Bush and Mr. Codina to pay more than $200,000 in delinquent real estate taxes, Mr. Griffin and Mr. Codina said. That step was approved by California Federal Bank, but Federal regulators, who were supposed to oversee such transactions, did not learn about it until after it had taken place, Mr. Fulton said.

The final settlement of $505,000 paid by the Bush-Codina partnership consisted of the $437,000 remainining in the interest reserve accountand the balance in a small escrow account, $68,000, according to records and the F.D.I.C. officials.

The final agreement was put together in the summer and fall of 1989, drafted in December, and entered into the court file earlier this year. During this time, legal authority for approving the settlement shifted from the Federal Home Loan Bank Board to the F.D.I.C., as a result of President Bush's signing the savings and loan rescue legislation on Aug. 9, 1989.

The Issue of Taxpayers' Money

Both Mr. Bush and Mr. Codina expressed surprise that the settlement of the loan could be interpreted as the use of taxpayers' money to make good a loan whose proceeds went for their building. Asked if they were aware that the funds for the repayment of the Broward Federal loan came from the taxpayers, both men said no.

Mr. Bush and Mr. Codina said they had incurred additional costs as a result of the transaction, the largest being a $1.316 million tax liability this year when they declared the forgiven debt as income to the Internal Revenue Service.
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« Reply #11 on: March 19, 2015, 06:25:04 AM »

"Lazy and not that bright"? Could anyone be lazier and dumber than obama? Lmao. Dudes got the ultimate part time job. I know grocery store bag boys who work more hours than he does. Lol. (Dead serious)

Yeah, the GOP since 2008 immediately come to mind.  Not bright at all and haven't done shit either.
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« Reply #12 on: March 19, 2015, 06:44:21 AM »

Things have gone swimmingly since u idiots voted in the shitbag n chief
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« Reply #13 on: March 19, 2015, 06:50:51 AM »

Things have gone swimmingly since u idiots voted in the shitbag n chief

Compared to the condition Bush left it in, I would say yes it has.
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« Reply #14 on: March 22, 2015, 06:41:50 AM »

“Gay-friendly” Jeb Bush: “People have a right” to refuse services to gays
Likely presidential contender signals support for license-to-discriminate measures
by Luke Brinker

Courting conservatives in Atlanta on Thursday, likely GOP presidential contender Jeb Bush threw his support behind efforts to allow businesses and individuals to refuse services to gay people on religious grounds, arguing that while couples in “long-term committed relationships” deserve respect, others “have a right” to discriminate.

Though Bush did not explicitly endorse a proposed measure in the Georgia legislature that would allow such discrimination, he expressed sympathy for the movement to sanction religiously-based discrimination.

“I don’t know about the law, but religious freedom is a serious issue, and it’s increasingly so, and I think people that act on their conscience shouldn’t be discriminated against, for sure,” Bush told reporters, speaking on the steps of the Georgia Statehouse. “There should be protections, and so, as it relates to marriage equality — and that may change, the Supreme Court may change that. That automatically then shifts the focus to people of conscience, and, I don’t know, have their faith make — they want to act on their faith, and may not be able to be employed for example.”

The former Florida governor added,  “People have a right to do that, just as we need to be respectful for people who are in long-term committed relationships. Sorting that out is important.”

Bush’s remarks echo the statement he released after a court ruling  paved the path for marriage equality to take effect in Florida earlier this year.

“I hope that we can show respect for the good people on all sides of the gay and lesbian marriage issue – including couples making lifetime commitments to each other who are seeking greater legal protections and those of us who believe marriage is a sacrament and want to safeguard religious liberty,” Bush said at the time.

Bush’s acknowledgement of committed gay couples and his use on Thursday of the gay-friendly term “marriage equality” underscore that Bush has adopted a different tone on the issue than some of his party’s most strident social conservatives. Still, however, he personally opposes the right of gay couples to marry. After BuzzFeed’s McKay Coppins dubbed Bush 2016′s “gay-friendly Republican” — pointing to the array of pro-gay figures in his orbit and even quoting anonymous Bush associates who claim he’s evolved on the marriage equality — Bush reaffirmed his support for “traditional marriage” during his appearance at the Conservative Political Action Conference. Since then, Bush has hired Jordan Sekulow, an ardent evangelical whose American Center for Law and Justice has defended the criminalization of gay sex internationally, to serve as an emissary to conservatives.

While Bush may realize that his party has all but lost its fight against marriage equality, his emphasis on “religious liberty” points to the next front in the gay rights battle. As marriage equality has taken effect throughout much of the nation, conservatives lawmakers have responded with a spate of measures aiming to protect those who would discriminate against gay couples on religious grounds. Even if he’s not inclined to back specific proposals just yet, Bush has clearly taken note of the trend, and shows every sign that he buys the right’s religious liberty narrative.

As LGBT rights advocates note, however, that brand of discrimination contravenes the well-established precedent that businesses and individuals offering services on the public market must adhere to generally applicable non-discrimination policies. At the end of the day, license-to-discriminate legislation isn’t about recognizing religious rights. It’s about creating special ones.


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« Reply #15 on: March 22, 2015, 05:12:34 PM »

Jeb Bush's Secret Is Out
by Lev Raphael

Jeb Bush has been making candidate noises for awhile now and if you wondered what he might be like as a candidate or wanted insight into his character, he gave plenty this week.

He's lazy. And maybe not all that bright.

As The Washington Post reports, he just spoke at a Chicago Council on Global Affairs luncheon. So you'd think someone who wanted to be president, or was at least considering it, might have studied up on some foreign policy issues. Think again.

He made a bunch of verbal gaffes that might be due to nerves, though you'd expect a former governor would be used to public speaking. But it's his answers to questions, and a confession, that raised more serious concerns.

Asked about NATO's stance in the Baltic region, he said, "I don't know what the effect has been, because, you know, it's really kind of hard to be out on the road, and I'm just a gladiator these days, so I don't follow every little detail."

Asked about failed states in the Middle East, he came out with this gem, "I don't have a solution. I mean, I -- I -- I've read articles, you know, about whether the 1915 kind of breakout of the Middle East and how that no longer is a viable deal."

He admitted he was no foreign policy expert, in a bizarre way: "Look, the more I get into this stuff, there are some things [where] you just go, you know, 'Holy schnikes.' "

He's clearly not ready for prime time and is a lousy decision maker, too. Why show off his ignorance of foreign affairs at a foreign affairs luncheon? Unless he thinks his Bush name absolves him of having to do research or prepare with consultants. Which means he's got as scary a sense of entitlement as his brother did.

Just what the country needs, the brother of the man who murdered 3,000 Americans on 9/11 with a false flag attack on his own nation.

Wake the fuck up people !!

BTW: the Dems are no different.
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« Reply #16 on: June 13, 2015, 05:03:37 AM »

Why do candidates keep hiring Mike Murphy?  He is supposedly some kind of "operative" but his candidates keep losing.  He ran McCains campaign which ended very badly.  He ran Meg Whitman's campaign with unlimited funds (she paid him $90,000 per month and she spent more than $130 million of her own money) and still lost.  Now he has been hired by Jeb.  ha ha ha  Bay likey!   Cheesy



Mike Murphy plots a win for Jeb Bush in the land of Hollywood liberals
By Mary Jordan

LOS ANGELES — When he has needed a quiet place to work, Mike Murphy has pedaled his electric commuter bike onto the Paramount Studios lot, flashed his ID and rode past cavernous stages such as No. 14, where filmmakers shot “Saturday Night Fever,” “The Hunt for Red October” and “Star Trek.”

Movie and TV stars paid no heed to the balding guy in horn-rimmed glasses and rumpled East Coast khakis as he made his way toward his office, closed the door and went to work trying to elect Jeb Bush president of the United States.

When Bush officially launches his campaign Monday, Murphy will have less time to spend at the Paramount hideaway he rented to write screenplays as he moves across town to run Right to Rise USA, the super PAC supporting his old friend.

For months, Murphy has been advising Bush, who so far has been unable to set himself apart from the crowded Republican field. Now Murphy, 53, will effectively be running a parallel political operation alongside Bush’s official campaign, overseeing TV and digital ads, short videos and other messaging to try to sell America on a third Bush.

What Murphy won’t be able to do is strategize with Bush, because federal election law prohibits super PACs from directly coordinating with campaigns.

That is no small thing for a GOP strategist known over the years as “a candidate whisperer” who has been close to Bush since 1997, when he worked on his campaign for Florida governor.

“I guess the calculation is that he has spent so much time with Bush there is no need for direct communication,” said Dan Schnur, who worked with Murphy on Sen. John McCain’s 2000 presidential campaign.

“Mike is a friend,” Bush said in an e-mail. “He is smart and funny. He is also one of the more creative guys I know.”

Bush recalled an ad Murphy created for his successful 1998 governor’s race: “We were doing a family bio ad, the family was having a picnic, along with our beloved dog Marvin. Marvin didn’t follow the script and jumped on the table and destroyed the neatly staged picnic.” Bush said Murphy “turned lemons into lemonade” and created “a real and funny” spot, “one of the better ads of its kind I’ve seen.”

Three thousand miles from the Bush campaign headquarters in Miami, Murphy is a red-meat Republican in a land of green-kale Hollywood liberals.

“I brought Mike to meet some of my friends,” said Dana Gould, a Los Angeles comedy writer who has worked on “The Simpsons.” “They said, ‘Mike Murphy, the Republican?’ He was like a Klingon aboard the Enterprise.”

Murphy has delighted in shaking things up, doing the unexpected, since he started creating political ads in his dorm room at Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service in the early 1980s.

A veteran of dozens of campaigns, Murphy has built a record of helping elect Republican governors in Democratic states, including Arnold Schwarzenegger in California, Mitt Romney in Massachusetts and Jeb Bush in Florida.

Along the way, Murphy has also worked for the Miami Heat and other sports teams, consulted on stand-up comedian Dennis Miller’s cable show, advised tech start-ups in Silicon Valley and booked himself passage on a nearly three-week container ship voyage from Seattle to Shanghai to force himself to finish an HBO script.

“He is the fiercest competitor I’ve ever gone up against and one of those I most admire,” said David Axelrod, who was chief campaign adviser for President Obama. “As technology grows, it offers all kinds of new possibilities, and Mike understands how technology can be used to spread the message.”

Axelrod and others said Murphy’s Silicon Valley connections — he is there nearly weekly — may be a boon to Bush efforts. Murphy has recruited tech talent that will analyze social media and big data to help target swing voters, flag issues as they arise and guide strategy.

Murphy is also seen as intolerant of ideas he disagrees with, “a genius who doesn’t do committee,” as a friend said. He has been divisive in some past campaigns, particularly because he gets so close to a candidate that other advisers feel out of the loop.

“Half the people thought he was fantastic, and the other half were jealous and spent every waking hour trying to figure out how to stab him in the back,” said John Weaver, who worked on the 2000 McCain presidential campaign with Murphy.

Weaver just signed on to advise Ohio Gov. John Kasich’s presidential bid, and in a conversation before that, Weaver also said of Murphy: “He has the rare ability to make candidates perform better, more authentically. He relaxes them, makes them laugh. Candidates are smitten with his intelligence and wit.”

Murphy won a lot of attention for a McCain upset win in New Hampshire against George W. Bush and by sitting in the back of the campaign’s “Straight Talk Express” bus with McCain, talking to reporters at length when access was tight with other candidates.

McCain, who has called Murphy “the funniest guy I know in politics,” said in an interview that Murphy “would always provide levity when we were riding around on the Straight Talk Express — and he had a good instinct for what the voters were thinking.”

Not long after George W. Bush won the 2000 race, Murphy returned to Florida to work on Jeb Bush’s 2002 reelection, amid talk in Washington that the Florida governor was keeping Murphy close in defiance of his brother and his White House team, who identified him with McCain.

When Murphy started advising Jeb Bush this year, some Republicans wondered if the Left Coaster has been too long away from a party base that has drifted right.

As an example, they note that Murphy signed a 2013 amicus brief in a U.S. Supreme Court case in support of gay marriage. He also has been vocal in urging the GOP to widen its tent and focus on attracting youths, women, Latinos and other minorities. As one donor said, though that may be critical in a general election, Murphy’s first task may be his hardest: connect Bush to conservative Republican primary voters.
A golden political touch

Arnold Schwarzenegger couldn’t wait for Murphy to show up each morning when he was running for governor in 2003 so he could hear his latest ideas, said Rob Stutzman, who worked on that campaign.

In a much-remembered stunt, Murphy arranged for Schwarzenegger to drop a wrecking ball on an Oldsmobile Cutlass as he said, “Hasta la vista, car tax,” in an echo of his famous line from “Terminator 2.”

But then a bomb dropped on Schwarzenegger’s campaign: The Los Angeles Times reported that six women were accusing him of sexually harassing and groping them.

Calculating that if he didn’t address the issue head-on it would dominate the last campaign swing, Schwarzenegger shocked many in the state when he responded to the charges by saying: “I always say that where there is smoke there is fire. . . . So what I want to say to you is, yes, I have behaved badly sometimes.”

Many called it vintage Murphy — unexpected and bold.

How he will use his quick response skills from the super PAC, without direct contact with Bush, is something many will be watching.

After Schwarzenegger’s win, Murphy decided to do more in Hollywood.

He made a lot of money, too, working with corporate clients and helping elect candidates in Canada, Panama and the Republic of Georgia. He bought acres of the Nova Scotia coast and for a while owned his own plane.

His friend Rob Long, a sitcom writer who officiated at his wedding, said he never knew what Murphy would do next. “Hey, let’s go to Vancouver!” Murphy called and said one day, and they were on Murphy’s plane heading to comedy shows with Don Rickles and Dennis Miller.

HBO bought his script for a TV series about political hacks, though it has not been green-lighted. A film production company he set up snagged attention when Meg Whitman, the billionaire who now runs Hewlett-
Packard, invested $1 million in it before Murphy began advising her unsuccessful 2010 bid for California governor.

“He’s unexpected,” said Tucker Bounds, who worked with Murphy on the Whitman campaign and now has him advising his tech start-up. “He has a lot of visibility in a lot of different worlds.”

Murphy declined to comment about himself for this article, citing, with a chuckle, “overexposure.”

That’s a new public posture for a man who has been a regular on “Meet the Press,” the pundit on the campaign trail whom reporters could count on for a memorable quote, such as his tweet during a 2011 GOP debate: “Listening to Rick Perry putting a complicated policy sentence together is like watching a chimp playing with a locked suitcase.”

In what Murphy has called his “older, fatter, balder, wiser” period, he has kept a quieter profile, teaching politics at Harvard, working on a new HBO and film project, getting a charge out of being, as he has described it, “an endangered species: a Republican in Hollywood.”

In 2011 he married Tiffany Daniel, a movie producer, and they have a 1-year-old daughter.

Now returning to the glare of presidential politics, he’ll have little time for his movie lot hideaway that is decorated with old movie posters, including Robert Redford in the “The Candidate,” and black-and-white photos he shot of candidates on the trail.

Scott Kaufer, a writer and executive producer of “Boston Legal” and “Memphis Beat” who helped him get the office, said his writing projects with Murphy will have to wait.

On one recent day, outside Murphy’s beige office door near the Blue Sky Tank where director Cecil B. DeMille parted the seas in the “Ten Commandments,” Irving Press helped rip down a cable show set.

“That’s surprising,” said Press, 61, when told a Republican has been inside plotting a road to the White House. But come to think of it, he said, Martin Sheen made a fine president on the West Wing.

“It’s just America,” he said.


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« Reply #17 on: June 14, 2015, 05:37:57 AM »

How Jeb Bush’s campaign ran off course before it even began
By Ed O'Keefe and Robert Costa

When asked to pinpoint where Jeb Bush’s presidential effort began running into trouble, many confidants utter a single word: Dallas.

Mike Murphy, Bush’s political alter ego, decided early on to hold regular senior staff meetings at an unusual location: a Hyatt hotel inside the terminal at Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport. The idea was that it was a central and relatively inexpensive gathering place for a team scattered from Los Angeles, where Murphy lives, to Miami, where the would-be candidate resides.

It went fine at first but quickly became an awkward routine. Donors and other Republicans found the setup ungainly for a campaign-in-waiting that was supposed to be based in Florida.

Older Bush hands also grew unhappy with rapid hiring by new advisers, and relationships frayed, according to Bush associates. And as the former Florida governor began to founder on the trail and in the polls, the discussions flared into arguments about how to divvy up money and resources between Bush’s allied super PAC and his official campaign.

“These things are always tug of wars,” Thomas D. Rath, a Bush family friend in New Hampshire, said of the initial sessions. “It’s almost like the first day of school, everyone trying to get to the right place and find the right seats.”

The airport huddles were just one sign among many of a political operation going off course — disjointed in message and approach, torn between factions and more haphazard than it appeared on the surface. Bush’s first six months as an all-but-declared candidate have been defined by a series of miscalculations, leaving his standing considerably diminished ahead of his formal entry into the race on Monday.

In interviews this week, dozens of Bush backers and informed Republicans — most of whom spoke on the condition of anonymity in order to comment candidly — described an overly optimistic, even haughty exploratory operation. Strategic errors were exacerbated by unexpected stumbles by the would-be candidate and internal strife within his team, culminating in a staff shake-up this week.


The original premise of Bush’s candidacy — that a bold, fast start would scare off potential rivals and help him overcome the burden of his last name — has proved to be misguided.

His operation’s ability to rake in large checks also fueled inflated expectations. Supporters acknowledged this week that an allied super PAC was likely to fall short — perhaps substantially — of predictions that it would bring in $100 million in the first half of the year.

On the stump, Bush has stuck to his pledge not to shift to the right to win the primary, but his middle-of-the-road positions on immigration and education have come off more as out of step with the base of his party than shrewdly pragmatic. His wonky question-and-answer exchanges with voters sometimes resemble college lectures rather than a disarming appeal for votes.

The troubles have eroded the image Bush has sought to present as the one Republican uniquely ready for the presidential stage. He has slipped in polls from presumed front-runner to one of several candidates jumbled toward the top of an increasingly crowded field.

“We’ve learned that the prospect of a big financial advantage is not going to keep people out of the race and that the notion of a new face is stronger than we might have thought,” Vin Weber, an outside Bush adviser, said in an interview. “That requires modest adjustments in strategy, not wholesale changes.”

After weeks of bad press, “donors were getting a little edgy,” Weber said. “No one is ready to jump ship. Nobody has lost heart. But they have watched other candidates rise in the polls.”

Speaking Wednesday in Berlin during an overseas trip, Bush expressed confidence. “It’s June, for crying out loud, so we’ve got a long way to go,” he said, adding later: “I’m going to compete everywhere. If I’m a candidate, there’s no fifth-place, you know, kind of mentality in my mind.”

Forced to make up lost ground, Bush, his aides and his super-PAC allies are now preparing plans to attack the records and experience of his GOP competition, especially Sens. Marco Rubio (Fla.) and Rand Paul (Ky.) and Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker. A summer envisioned as a season of slow and warm introductions to voters is poised to be a battle as Bush tries to recapture his place atop the pack.

“The Bushes have always underestimated the depth of the base’s dissatisfaction with their policies, and they take the criticism personally,” Laura Ingraham, a conservative talk-radio host, said in an interview. “Jeb has to try to understand the reasons why conservatives have problems with him instead of crowing about how principled he is.”

Aides bristle at what they consider the media’s relentless focus on Bush’s personal and professional past. They say that out on the campaign trail, in visits to more than a dozen states, he has been doing exactly what he should.

“Interacting with people on the road who deal with real issues . . . that’s what brings true joy to Jeb,” Sally Bradshaw, a longtime consultant, said in a recent e-mail.

Bush started with an aggressive series of steps late last year and early this year— a kind of “shock and awe” entry that caught fellow contenders by surprise. The moves were designed to send an unambiguous cue to fundraisers and party activists and to reinforce a natural advantage Bush had with establishment donors.

At the same time, Bush’s inner circle operated on the theory that there was little that could be gained by trying to speed up the political clock and that most voters in early states would not begin paying attention until later in the year.

Bush revived a 650-member alumni network of aides who worked for him as governor and recruited 21 veterans of his father and brother’s administrations to advise him on foreign policy. He hired state directors in the first four early states, aides for outreach to evangelicals and Hispanics, and a spokeswoman dedicated to fielding questions from the Spanish-language press.

As Bush travels the country, he has fielded more than 900 questions from donors, reporters and voters, according to aides. He has maintained a busy schedule that stretches from the early-voting states of Iowa, New Hampshire, South Carolina and Nevada — where conservative Republicans remain skeptical — to places visited less frequently at this early stage by presidential candidates, including Denver, Seattle and Puerto Rico.

Despite those efforts, some recent surveys put Bush in a five-way tie for the lead. Recent polls touted by his advisers give him a wide lead in New Hampshire, while others taken nationally and in the early states put him behind Rubio and Walker.

Sensing Bush’s vulnerabilities, Ohio Gov. John Kasich this week hired two experienced GOP operatives as he prepares to jump into the contest and make a play for the same donors Bush has already wooed.

“I didn’t think I was going to be back up here again, because frankly I thought Jeb was just going to suck all the air out of the room, and it just hasn’t happened,” Kasich told New Hampshire business leaders last week.

Bush dispatched one possible adversary early when Mitt Romney decided not to run again. His vigorous entrance also bruised the chances of New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, who is still pondering a bid. They did not regard Rubio as a likely opponent, thinking he would decide against challenging his onetime mentor, but were proved wrong when the young, telegenic Cuban American jumped in the race.

Early on, there were indications that Bush’s ability to command huge amounts of cash for his allied Right to Rise super PAC was emerging as the dominant characteristic of his potential candidacy. His team laid out presidential-style goals for fundraisers, asking them to hit goals of $50,000, $100,000, $250,000 or $500,000 by April 17. The money was flowing into the super PAC so briskly that his advisers issued an edict — no contributions of more than $1 million, for now.

“He was more of a super-PAC candidate than a retail candidate,” said one Republican close to the Bush operation. “. . . When was the last time he’s asked anyone for a vote? It’s been quite a few years.”

Those concerns, simmering under the surface, finally boiled over one week in mid-May with a series of interviews focused on the most obvious issue imaginable for a Bush: the Iraq war.
Starting with an interview aired on Fox News on Monday, May 11, Bush struggled over four days to answer whether he would have authorized the war begun by his brother given what is known now about faulty intelligence. He first said yes, then said “maybe,” and then refused to answer altogether.


Finally that Thursday he attempted to settle the issue at a campaign-style event in Arizona. “Here’s the deal,” he said. “If we’re all supposed to answer hypothetical questions — knowing what we know now, what would you have done — I would have not engaged. I would not have gone into Iraq.”

The episode served to crystallize some of the key concerns about Bush — his reluctance to criticize or distance himself from the unpopular policies of George W. Bush, and his tendency toward prickliness if pushed.

“We should have had that answer nailed down,” one donor said. “There were people who were really shaken by that.”

By the time major party donors gathered in Dallas in late May for a meeting of the Republican Governors Association’s executive roundtable, the overwhelming sentiment was that Jeb Bush was less formidable than many thought he was going to be, according to several participants. Some flatly stated that they did not believe he could win the nomination.

People close to Bush started getting anxious, according to a top party fundraiser with close ties to his advisers — and things began to deteriorate inside the Bush camp.

David Kochel, an Iowa-based strategist and former Romney aide, had been brought aboard in January as a de facto campaign manager. As the months wore on, Bradshaw and Murphy became jittery about Kochel’s concentration on staffing issues rather than deflecting the shots being thrown Bush’s way.

Meanwhile, Bush was growing chummy with Danny Diaz, a 39-year-old Washington native and onetime plumber, who was spotted several times on the road with Bush while Kochel ground away at headquarters near the Miami airport.

By late May, Kochel’s grip on power had eroded. Bradshaw and Murphy moved with the candidate’s blessing to push Kochel into a lesser role and ensure they alone had final say about the allocation of funds. The candidate, urged on by his allies and donors, suggested that a more assertive tack was necessary.

On Monday, as Bush prepared to leave for Europe, Diaz was named the campaign manager.

Friends and donors are hopeful that Bush has corrected course and that his cash-flush political committees will carry him further than other candidates.

“He’s going to try to do it his way without acting with every change in the wind, without doing full face-plants on the pandering,” said Tallahassee lobbyist John “Mac” Stipanovich, a Bush ally.
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« Reply #18 on: June 14, 2015, 07:52:04 AM »

Jeb is still in drivers seat.  Whoever fox tells viewers is hot, is surging... Suddenly they all support the guy.  No way 38% of people shifted from Santorum to newt to Cain to Romney suddenly back in 2012.   Callers and polled just support who they think will win.  They want to say "I knew all along that Herman Cain would pull it out". 
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« Reply #19 on: June 14, 2015, 10:45:15 AM »

Hey Bay. How come you don't provide links to these stories? It's just a copy and paste from some unknown publication.

When you want to see where something's from, just c/p a half-paragraph or whatever into a search.

It's all an echo-chamber, anyway.
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« Reply #20 on: June 14, 2015, 11:45:40 AM »

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* jebb.jpg (11.48 KB, 400x400 - viewed 30 times.)
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