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Posted by on Apr 4, 2015 in Featured | 11 comments

The Jeb myth, destroyed


Oh, that nice guy is running. Not like his brother George, Jeb is (isn’t he?) smarter and milder and seems to have decent friends.

No Cheney on the horizon. Jeb is not an inarticulate crum-bum. Not surrounded by crum-bums. Not with a history of heavy drinking and mistreating dames. Nice, middle-of-the-road Republican with lower-key religious practices.

Too bad: turns out this guy is no better than (say) Rick or Michelle or Rudy or Newt. And now he’s grabbed leadership of the dirty money gang. He’s found a way to evade even the newest, loosest Supreme Court limitations on money-raising.

An individual donor can give no more than $5,400 to a presidential campaign. Individuals and corporations can give unlimited sums to super PACs, and their names are publicly reported. But with the new Right to Rise group, individuals and corporations can give as much as they want while remaining anonymous.

Election-law experts predict that the creation of the ­Bush-allied nonprofit will prompt other 2016 contenders to adopt the strategy, injecting more secret money into the political process. …WaPo

“Right to Rise?” Sounds like an extremist group in Italy or Germany in the 1930’s.

Well, close. In fact it was started by one of Jeb’s best, best friends: Bill Simon, former chief exec at WalMart. And now, as backup, a legal team to run interference. They will explore a variety of ways to insure Jeb’s run for the White House with, not excluding the use of “other indirect means, such as voter-registration or field efforts.” All without the candidate being directly involved, as the law requires.

But no: all that preppy, Connecticut stuff about honor and the appearance of decency has disappeared or, at best, is moving into history in a wheelchair along with Poppy Bush. This next generation has found paths and allies to take them onward and upward through Texas, Florida, and Arkansas-style politics. And there’s plenty of new money for the next generation of Bushes.

Of course, it may be harder than Jeb imagines to maintain a facade of Mr. Clean or Mr. Earnest or the more common guise — Mr. Gee-I-Didn’t-Know — to satisfy the shreds of campaign law that remain intact. There’s just too much evidence that Jeb is fully engaged in this work-around, “Right to Rise.”

…Anthony Herman, a former general counsel of the FEC, said that if the group was set up carefully, it could skirt such legal questions.

“I am certain, with the level of sophistication of these political operatives, they will steer comfortably around the FEC,” Herman said. “It is very, very cleverly designed.”…WaPo

Cross-posted from Prairie Weather

“Jeb Bush 2013 CPAC by Gage Skidmore4” by Gage Skidmore – [1]. Licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0 via Wikimedia Commons –