April 24, 2014

IT'S THE GROWN-UP PARTY:

Wanted: Jeb Bush or another grown-up (JENNIFER RUBIN, April 23, 2014, Washington Post)

Such a candidate must be prepared and interested in national security. If that person is not already fully up to speed on the myriad of international challenges, the potential grownup should be hitting the books, talking to experts and traveling -- now. I will be blunt: If the person is too busy now, either because there is a reelection campaign looming or his or her day job takes too much time, it is unlikely the person will be able to get command of the facts, articulate reasoned views and be able to go toe-to-toe with Hillary Clinton. If you wait until the presidential announcement date to learn history and geopolitics it will be too late. If potential candidates think they are busy now, wait until a presidential campaign comes along. Running for president may be the hardest thing they will ever do, and time for gaining national security proficiency will be virtually nonexistent. [...]

In addition, the grownup will need an even-keel personality and a highly professional staff that can battle for the candidate effectively without getting into a blood match with every critic. The voters can tell when a presidential candidate is comfortable in his own skin and his staff is up to speed and confident about its candidate. Voters will need to imagine these people dealing with foreign crises or difficult lawmakers. If the candidate and/or the circle of advisers are frantic, bellicose, slipshod or ignorant, voters will run the other way.

The reason, I suspect, Jeb Bush is stirring so much interest is that there are grave doubts, not only among the donor class, about whether there is a grown-up among the potential contenders. 

Posted by at April 24, 2014 5:38 AM
  

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