When it comes to establishment candidates that lose, Jeb Bush appears particularly adept at winning their endorsements for president.
Former failed Presidential candidate Bob Dole endorsed Bush after last night’s debate in Wisconsin, describing him as the most qualified candidate to run against the Democrats.
“Jeb has the proven leadership skills and executive experience needed to fix the problems facing our country – from the anemic economy to America’s weakened standing among world leaders,” Dole said in a statement released by the campaign.
Dole praised Bush for his “conservative” agenda and “forward looking vision” on the economy and world affairs.
Bush was thrilled to receive the endorsement. “Honored to welcome Sen Bob Dole to the team as National Veterans’ Chairman,” he wrote on Twitter. “Thankful for his service to our country.”
The announcement was uniquely timed for Veterans’ Day as the former Senate Minority leader frequently highlighted his military service on the campaign trail while serving as a U.S. Senator for the state of Kansas.
He also ran unsuccessfully against President Bill Clinton in 1996, which resulted in a dramatic loss for the Republican party.
Clinton won with 379 electoral votes, while Dole only got 159.
“I have said repeatedly in this campaign that the president was my opponent, not my enemy,” Dole said in his concession speech to Clinton “And I wish him well and I pledge my support in whatever advances the cause of a better America.”
Bush also earned the endorsement from another Republican establishment losing candidate, former House Majority Leader Eric Cantor.