Broward News

Jeb Bush Versus Marco Rubio for President in 2016? Tough Week for Jeb So Far

It's been a landmine-filled week for Jeb! so far, on both of his two supposed strongest fronts: outreach to Hispanics and education "reform."

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On Monday, he got up on the Today show and 180'd his previous immigration stance, mouthing off about how the little brown ones who sneaked into the land of the free should just go back where they came from and stay there. By doing so, he was surely angling to please the right-wing base of the Republican Party -- but it totally blows his chance at filling the role of GOP savior/recapturer of the Hispanic vote in the 2016 presidential run.

That must have made Wonder Boy Marco Rubio's day. Bush and Rubio both seem to be preparing for the Republican presidential nomination for 2016, and these two former allies could be pitted against each other in the primaries. Or looked at another way, the maneuvering that's happening now is the primary race.

Sunday was also troublesome for Jeb, as an exposé by the Tampa Tribune came crashing down on his twin pet projects: Foundation for Excellence in Education and Foundation for Florida's Future. Turns out the two have been colluding to evade a state law that prohibits lobbyists from showering legislators with perks -- little things like air travel, hotel stays, meals, and "incidentals."

As the Tribune reported, the FEE "escapes that prohibition because lobbyists on its staff are registered to another, closely related Bush foundation -- even though the two share key staff members and even their Tallahassee address."

But what the hell. The FEE's just a scam underwritten by private corporations working to get the state to get out of the business of education and turn it over to those who know what the public really needs: money in the pockets of the private corporations who underwrite the foundation.

In the aftermath of the Tribune revelations, Bush minion Patricia Levesque, who oversees management of the two foundations, surrendered her lobbying registration, a gig that had allowed her to pull down $795,000 from 2009 to 2011. Maybe she -- and Jeb! -- will learn something from the experience. But probably not.

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