Per a Las Vegas Sun report, Jeb Bush used what amounts to an early campaign stop in Nevada to draw a distinction between himself and two past Bush presidencies.
His budding campaign is sensitive to charges of just being another Bush in a country that may already be Bushed.
“A lot of people know my dad, they know my brother,” he said, referring to former presidents George H.W. Bush and George W. Bush. “As in everybody’s family, we’re all a little different. I have my own life experience, so I want to share that with you.”
He touted his business experience in banking and real estate as something that sets him apart from most politicians in Washington, D.C., boasting, “I’ve had the chance to sign the front side of a paycheck.”
He also used the event to attack Obama on both domestic and foreign policy. Nevada comes up fairly early in the GOP nominating process.
Both Sens. Rand Paul and Marco Rubio have also visited recently. The senior crowd at the Las Vegas retirement community seemed receptive to the former Florida governor, who touted his time in office and in business during his remarks.
“This president has failed us on economic policy,” Bush said, criticizing the 2.4 percent increase in gross domestic product in 2014 as not enough growth to help middle-class families.
Bush spent the first 15 minutes of his appearance introducing himself to an enthusiastic crowd of more than 300 people, mostly seniors, gathered at the age-restricted Sun City Summerlin community.
Just how conservative he is has been the subject of debate, especially at CPAC, which just wrapped up this weekend.
While serving two terms as Florida’s governor from 1999-2007, Bush said he applied conservative principles in a state that “is not much different” than Nevada in many ways, including its lack of personal income tax and even mix of Republican and Democratic voters.
“We cut taxes every year totaling $19 billion. We reduced the state workforce in government by 13,000 or 15,000, and we increased the number of jobs, not me but the private sector did, by 1.4 million net new jobs during those eight years,” he said.