Say it ain’t so!
The man who once mocked Ronald Reagan’s economic policies as “voodoo economics,” who once promised not to raise taxes and then did raise taxes, who called himself a conservative and then governed as a moderate, just told a Kennedy that he’d be voting for Hillary Clinton. Yes, that’s right. Kathleen Hartington Kennedy Townsend, the daughter of the late Robert “Bobby” Kennedy and the former Lt. Governor of Maryland, told Facebook earlier this week that Bush told her he was voting for Hillary!
On Monday, Townsend posted a picture on her Facebook page shaking hands next to the former president and this caption: “The President told me he’s voting for Hillary!!”
In a telephone interview, Townsend said she met with the former president in Maine earlier today, where she said he made his preference known that he was voting for a Democrat. “That’s what he said,” she told POLITICO.
The reaction on the Internet came fast and furious with Democrats crowing and Republicans bemoaning the news of such an important defection. Some corners of the GOP called for patience; maybe the story wasn’t true, maybe Hartington was exaggerating or kidding, maybe the former president simply misspoke. His spokesman reached out to ABC News to comment on the kerfuffle, but his comments seemed to confirm Hartington’s story.
“The vote President Bush will cast as a private citizen in some 50 days will be just that: a private vote cast in some 50 days,” a spokesman for Bush told ABC News. “He is not commenting on the presidential race in the interim.”
While the story may be saddening, no one should be shocked. The Bush family has never been philosophically rigid conservatives; they’ve always been identified as establishment favorites who were more Rockefeller than Goldwater. To be quite honest, it would be more surprising to see George H.W. Bush embracing Trump than it would be to see him standing with Hillary. Sad, but not surprising. Can we finally be done with the Bush family dynasty in the GOP? Please?