Jeb Bush to Newsmax: Obama Campaigning Like '10-Year-Old'

Sunday, 28 Oct 2012 03:56 PM

By David A. Patten and Kathleen Walter

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Former Florida governor Jeb Bush is blasting President Barack Obama for demeaning the office of the presidency Friday, citing his barnyard epithets and snarky comportment toward GOP nominee Mitt Romney, and likening it to the behavior of a "10-year-old."

In an exclusive Newsmax TV interview, Bush said it appeared President Obama “is very annoyed by the fact that someone dare challenge him, and challenge his presidency, and challenge him for reelection.”

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Bush, who supports the former Massachusetts governor’s presidential bid, said he believes the Obama campaign’s tactics could backfire.

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“When you act like that, when you blame other people and when you use profane language, and when you act like you’re a 10-year-old, sometimes as in the debates, I don’t think that independent voters and undecided voters are really moved by that,” he said.

In fact, Bush, who served as Florida’s 43rd governor, said that he believes the Obama campaign’s tactics ultimately will work to Romney’s advantage.

“I’m a Mitt Romney fan,” said Bush, a leading GOP figure and oft-mentioned presidential prospect. “I hope that President Obama continues to campaign these last 10 days in that surly way, because if he does, I think he loses.”

Following his lackluster debate performance in Denver on Oct. 3, President Obama became much more aggressive in attacking Romney.

In the third debate, Obama appeared to mock Romney’s concerns over the future of U.S. military strength, explaining for example that aircraft land on aircraft carriers.
In recent days on the campaign trail, the president has frequently used the term “Romnesia” -- a wordplay clearly intended to paint Romney as a flip-flopper.

Also, in an interview with Rolling Stone, Obama used a barnyard epithet to refer to Romney. “You know, kids have good instincts,” Obama said. “They look at the other guy and say, ‘Well, that’s a bull***tter, I can tell.’”

Asked if the president’s personal attacks demean the office of the presidency, Bush replied: “It does, but here’s the sad reality: We have a temporary time in American history where our culture has been coarsened, where people’s expectations are low. We’re living in a different time.

“As president of the United States,” he continued, “there’s the old expression that if you work hard, and you play by the rules, and if you have success, you could be just like him. You could be a president of the United States. That’s what dads tell their boys and moms tell their girls.

“When you act like that, it’s kind of hard to say as a parent to your child, ‘You could be a president of the United States.’ Maybe there are other avocations that might be something that would create greater pride. Sadly, when you act that way, people begin to diminish the importance of the presidency,” Bush said.

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Other highlights from the exclusive Newsmax interview with the GOP leader:

Bush describes himself as a “huge optimist about the future of our country,” but must says the nation must meet huge social challenges, particularly in education, in order to meet the challenges of tomorrow.

He believes Romney may benefit by closing out his campaign with a positive message, despite the fact that 90 to 95 percent of all campaign ads he’s seen aired in Florida have been negative.

He describes Romney’s pick of Rep. Paul Ryan as his GOP vice presidential running mate “an inspired choice.” Ryan, he says, has been “a giant” in terms of his “courage to be able to touch all of the third rails of American politics and challenge convention, because we have to.”

Asked if he would be interested in serving as secretary of education if Romney wins the election, Bush said he believes he could be more effective operating outside the Beltway. But he added: “You never say never to a president.”

Bush, the younger brother of former President George W. Bush conceded that President Obama was “dealt a difficult hand” at the beginning of his term. He said he will leave it to history to ultimately judge how effective Obama has been as president.

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He said his parents, former President George H. W. Bush and former first lady Barbara Bush, are “doing fantastic,” adding: “I was going to go visit them next week and I was told, ‘You can come, but we’re doing a fundraising event for Mitt Romney.’ October 30th; they’re still at it. They’re trying to help. They’re big fans of Mitt and Ann Romney, and they hope that they become president and first lady.”


See other exclusive excerpts from the Newsmax interview with former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush:

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