August 31, 2004


He's young, good looking, and Hispanic - could he be the next George Bush in the White House? (Dan Glaister, August 31, 2004, The Guardian)

The polished young man speaking on Univision, the biggest Spanish-language TV channel in the US, might have been a movie star. Or perhaps, with his fluent Spanish and handsome features, a sports star.

Or he might be the next member of the Bush dynasty to take to the political stage and become possibly, just possibly, the first Hispanic president of the US.

Meet George P Bush, 28, nephew to W, grandson of H, son of Jeb.

"George P Bush is a tremendous asset to the family," said Dario Moreno, director of Florida International University's Metropolitan Centre. "He's obviously Hispanic, he's an attractive young man, he's articulate and he's a Bush. That's a powerful combination. It raises the dynastic possibility, and it could be a hoot if the first Hispanic president of the US is a Bush." [...]

George P first emerged as a political asset in the 2000 presidential campaign, when he gave a well-received speech at the Republican national convention and appeared in Spanish-language TV commercials for his uncle's campaign. He also became a minor celebrity, making his way on to a list of the nation's 100 most eligible bachelors.

He studied law at the University of Texas at Austin, where he met his wife, Amanda, whom he married earlier this month at a ceremony attended by the entire Bush family. Earlier this year he left his position as an assistant to a Dallas judge and spent the summer as an intern with two leading south Florida law firms.

"That strengthens the family's political base in Miami," said Mr Moreno. "And it lays the groundwork for an eventual entry into politics. It seems clear to me that he's being groomed."

One of the most noticable atmospheric differences between New York and Boston is that the buzz at the Republican Convention surrounds peoples' bright political futures and the battle of heavyweights that is shaping up for the '08 nomination. The only Democrat who anyone seems to think has any kind of future is Hillary Clinton. They ended up with their awful nominee thisb time because they have no bench strength and they don't appear to be developing a next generation of leaders. That's one of the catastrophic effects of being in the permanent minority, as the GOP discovered from 1932 to 2000.

Posted by Orrin Judd at August 31, 2004 11:14 AM


But he just got married......

Posted by: Sandy P at August 31, 2004 11:26 AM

I've no doubt that George P is a great guy and has a bright future. However, I'm opposed to any dynastic political families regardless of their orientation (Kennedy, Cuomo, Taft or Bush). We don't need no stinking aristocracy! Let's leave inherited political power in the sinking morass of European aristocracy and tin plate glorious leaders like Kim and Saddam.

While I'm voting for Bush in 04, one of the main reasons I voted for Gore in 00 was that his family was slightly less embedded in an ersatz ruling class (senator's son vs. president's son). The Republicans have plenty of talent on the bench and shouldn't have to count on one family.

Posted by: David Rothman at August 31, 2004 11:40 AM


Europe's decline dates from the end of monarchy and aristocracy.

Posted by: oj at August 31, 2004 12:03 PM

I can't think of a worse rationale for voting for somebody than "Well, his dad was a senator and his dad was president, so I'm voting for the senator's son." Why not just flip a coin?

Posted by: Governor Breck at August 31, 2004 12:09 PM

I'm going with David on this one. I've cast three votes for a George Bush. I'm likely to cast one more, but that's it.

You talk down the Democrats for having no "bench strength" but how does having the same name as two other presidents qualify another George Bush for the White House?

Posted by: Brandon at August 31, 2004 12:21 PM

But, guys, he's got the HAIR - and you know how important that is.

Posted by: Sandy P at August 31, 2004 12:44 PM

My understanding is that it is a Texas law firm, not a Miami one, that he will be employed at. As a part Hispanic GOPer named Bush in Texas he is a dead on lock to be Governor and/or Senator. President? Maybe/maybe not, but it is 20 years in the future. David and Brandon's objections may mellow that far in the future.

Posted by: Bob at August 31, 2004 12:48 PM


Because we've got Bushes, they've got Kennedys and Clintons. Actually, we have the next Kennedy family member with a realistic shot at the presidency.

Posted by: oj at August 31, 2004 1:23 PM


Our plumber's dad was a plumber.

Posted by: oj at August 31, 2004 1:26 PM


While I agree with the distaste for dynasties in the USA, the characterization of P. as being qualified only by his name rings hollow. THe article describes many non-family related features. These may or may not be accurate, but it's certainly not the case that the articles argues for P. solely based on his family name.

Posted by: Annoying Old Guy at August 31, 2004 1:44 PM

I notice he hasn't fought in the Iraqi war.

Posted by: h-man at August 31, 2004 2:31 PM


That's a qualifier these days. Combat vets lose.

Posted by: oj at August 31, 2004 2:52 PM

Gov. Breck,
When I think back to election 2000, Bush didn't look as good as he does now with 9/11 behind him and Gore was still in his android-American mode (which was infinitely superior to his unhinged moonbat mode of today). If Gore had won, I would have been partially responsible for the worst electoral mistake in US history. Talk about the wrong man in the wrong place at the wrong time!

However, having said that, I still think that any movement towards politically empowered families is as much a danger to our form of government as the restrictions to free speech in Campaign Finance Reform (spit!) and legislation from the courts. The infighting and scheming among the Senatorial families of Rome was one of the factors that led to the downfall of the Republic and the rise of the Caesars. Similar problems led to the collapse of many of the City-State Republics of Italy. These examples were carefully studied by the founders for guidance in developing the Constitution. As Orrin has pointed out in other postings, there is a natural tendency for power to aggregate towards the central government and we've already slipped quite a bit from the original Federalist ideal. Allowing quasi-royal families to arise is yet another erosion of our original design. I'm not in favor of seeing how far we can push our system before it collapses, so when all else is equal, I'll give the benefit of the doubt to the outsider.

Your point that Europe achieved its greatest achievements under monarchy and aristocracy is well taken. With a few notable exceptions (Elizabeth I, Charlemagne, Lorenzo Medici) most European achievements occured despite the efforts of the aristocracy and the guilds. That's one of the reasons why so many of Europe's best and brightest have come here. We organized our society and government in direct opposition to any aristocracy other than that of merit.

With respect to plumbers, I have no problems with dynasties of plumbers, pickle makers, lawyers, farmers, or orthodontists. I do have a problem with dynasties of rulers.

As I said in my first post, I'm sure George P is a good guy, and might make a fine president. If he runs, and depending who's running against him, I might very well vote for him. The problem I have is that democracies and republics are fundamentally unstable systems. There's a natural tendency for them to fall into tyranny or anarchy over time. We've got a complex feedback system between the House, the Senate, the Judiciary, the Executive, the Electoral College to try and keep the system in balance. We constantly tinker with the system (in my opinion usually for the worse) and have kept it going longer than any other modern republic (215 years). In comparison, the Roman Republic lasted 465 years by using a different set of control systems. Competition, intrigue and assasinations among the dynastic families was one of the major factors leading to the collapse of the Roman Republic. History doesn't repeat itself, but why welcome a change to our system that could eventually lead to a disaster down the road?

Posted by: David Rothman at August 31, 2004 2:53 PM


Politics is a family business like any other.

Posted by: oj at August 31, 2004 3:07 PM

When you're dealing with continued survival of our nation and society, family business is too risky for me. Sorry for sounding so shrill, but to me this is a canary in the coal mine indicator that our belief in Republican government is begining to weaken.

Posted by: David Rothman at August 31, 2004 4:00 PM


weaken? It doesn't work. Hard to see though why politics should be any different than every other human endeavor, all of which feature sons following their fathers.

Posted by: oj at August 31, 2004 4:36 PM

Politics is and always has been a family affair. But with 280 million people in this country, there are plenty of people who are not named George Bush and are qualified to be president. The Republicans can surely find some of them.

Posted by: Brandon at August 31, 2004 5:25 PM


There's pretty little evidence for your assertion over the last twenty years.

Posted by: oj at August 31, 2004 5:47 PM

We probably need to come back and review this question in 2028 or so.

Posted by: John at August 31, 2004 8:03 PM

While the Bush name should not be a qualifier for political success, neither should it be an automatic disqualifier. Each individual is his own man (or woman) and should make their own case for why they are uniquely qualified to lead this great nation at that specific point in time. George Bush is making just that case while Kerry is failing miserably.

Posted by: Mike at August 31, 2004 11:35 PM