Texas Sen. Ted Cruz will be able to draw on some big-name praise if the GOP presidential nomination race ever comes down to a battle with former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush.
Bush’s son, George P. Bush, once called Cruz “the future of the Republican Party.”
The comments were made in a 2012 statement Bush made in support of Cruz’s run in the Texas Republican Senate primary, long before Cruz and Bush became rivals in the 2016 Republican primaries. Cruz became the first to seek the nomination with an official announcement in March.
Jeb Bush made his campaign official Monday.
“[Cruz] is a proven conservative, and his personal story embodies the American Dream. Like Marco Rubio in Florida, I am confident that Ted will inspire a new generation of leaders to stand up and defend American exceptionalism,” George P. Bush said in the 2012 statement, according to Buzzfeed.
He took it a step further in 2013 when he told the Texas Tribune he was following the example set by Cruz for his own campaign for Texas land commissioner.
“Our idea is to take a page out of Ted Cruz’s playbook and engage the grassroots and the activists within the party throughout the state,” he told the Tribune.
The younger Bush also praised Cruz and the tea party for the changes they were making to the Republican Party.
“I analogize it to the Great Reformation, where you have outside forces that reform a body or an institution,” he said. “I think there are definitely some positive effects that are taking place within the party because of the tea party, increased grassroots activism, increased attention and concerns with respect to what’s happening in Washington, D.C.”
In 2014 Bush reaffirmed his admiration of for the Texas senator.
“I think he has been a forceful advocate for the issues that we talked about today on Obamacare and now increasingly on the international stage,” he told the Tribune.
“But you know he is a force of nature on the conservative side and he’s fearless. And honestly there are a lot of folks who are hungry for that type of challenge in Washington D.C. And so we still exchange texts here and there you know. Obviously, we will help him with whatever he needs.”
When reached for comment by Buzzfeed about his previous praise for Cruz, Bush said he was “not going to endorse” Cruz.
Of his father he said, “I think folks know that I love him.”
As much as Cruz?
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