George P. Bush prepares for statewide run in Texas
George Prescott Bush, son of former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, told the Associated Press on Friday that he will run for statewide office in Texas in 2014 - but he's not quite sure which office he'll seek just yet.
"We are for sure running, the question is the office," said Bush, a 36-year old attorney from Fort Worth. He indicated that he is waiting to hear of Texas Gov. Rick Perry's plan before deciding on a path of his own.
Perry, who has been governor since former President George W. Bush left Texas for the White House in 2001, has not yet indicated whether he will run for reelection again.
Some have speculated that Bush might mount a primary challenge to Perry, but Bush provided no such hint in the interview, saying that "we want to be team players in the party, providing a younger, fresher vision for our values."
Bush is thought to be eyeing the post of Texas Land Commissioner most closely - a low profile but powerful post that has provided a valuable stepping stone for several previous Texas governors. He may also run for state attorney general if the current officeholder, Greg Abbott, decides to run for governor himself.
Some Texas conservatives see Bush, who speaks fluent Spanish and is biracial (his mother is from Mexico), as a valuable liaison to the Hispanic community in Texas, which has trended strongly Democratic in recent elections.
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Despite the high hopes, Bush cautions that his party can't assume that his heritage will win Hispanic votes for the GOP. "I don't necessarily agree with the idea that having a candidate of Hispanic origin, or someone who can speak Spanish, can automatically obtain these votes," he said. "It's important tactically to have candidates that understand the issues of the community."
Bush also addressed the benefits of being the scion of such a storied political family, admitting that the name alone isn't enough - but that it helps. "It's always been a thing of my grandmother to say, 'Go out and make a name for yourself' and that's something that I've followed," he said. "But who better to ask for advice on politics than two former presidents and a former governor? They're not involved in the day-to-day operations. They're not involved in formulating my ideology. It's more of an informal advice."
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