FORT LAUDERDALE (CBS4) – Former Florida Governor Jeb Bush has not announced whether or not he’s going to run for President, but the speculation grows and so do the joke.
“If you were to run for President, would you have your mother’s vote?” joked Mike Jackson from Auto Nation.
“Yes!” laughed Bush, “Yes I would!”
There was even a bit of a jab at potential rival New Jersey Governor Chris Christie who’s embroiled in scandal.
“Just to clear the subject,” Jackson said with a smirk, “when you were governor, did you ever close any bridges for traffic studies?” Bush smiled, making a “zipping” motion over his lips.
“I told you he’s trying to be non-political this morning,” mused Jackson.
Jokes aside, Bush sounded like he was running for office while speaking to the Broward Workshop, comprised of multiple business leaders. He even referred to past fundraising.
“This is probably, for many of you,” Bush laughed, “the cheapest time that you’ve been with me!”
Even though his speech sounded like he was on the campaign trail, addressing energy policy, immigration, education, and the economy; Bush swears there’s no headline here.
“It sounds like you were laying out some ideas of yours,” mentioned CBS4’s Ted Scouten.
“Yeah,” Bush said, “I give about 125 speeches a year, nothing I’ve said here has been any different from anything I’ve said for the last three years.”
If Bush ran, he would be a strong candidate on the Republican side, but still would face a tough battle. A recent Rasmussen Poll found if he ran against Hillary Clinton she would get more votes – 47 to 33 percent.
At least for now, the former governor is playing it coy – allowing the speculation to grow before he shows his hand.
“Any word on 2016?” Scouten asked.
“Nope,” said Bush. “I’m going to make a decision later in the year.”
One of Jeb Bush’s biggest strengths, his family name, could also be one of his biggest handicaps. Polls found that many voters don’t like the idea of a third Bush in the White House. But his supporters point out he’s very different from his brother and father.