Perhaps one of the most memorable aspects of Jeb Bush's 2016 presidential campaign was just how unmemorable it was. His bid for the presidency was marked by self-deprecating comments, bullying tweets from Donald Trump, a less-than-supportive family, and a sad plea for his supporters to, please, just clap for him. After he didn't win any state Republican caucuses, a disappointed Jeb dropped out of the race.
Although he came from one of the American presidency's legacy families, the 2016 campaign was just the tip of the embarrassment iceberg for Jeb Bush, who's had to deal with his fair share of private family embarrassments as well; by his own father's admission, Jeb typically came second to his older brother and former US President, George W. Bush. His mother also publicly declared she hoped he wouldn't become president. Jeb has since become the butt of many online jokes, memes, and even has his own card in Cards Against Humanity, which simply reads: "Jeb!"
Bush Was Classically Self-Deprecating, Noting That People's Expectations Of Him Were Extremely Low
Jeb seemed to be remarkably self-aware during the campaign, referring numerous times to his status as the saddest candidate on the trail. When asked if he could be a surprise story on caucus night, Jeb replied, "Yes, as the expectations are so low." Even after he bowed out of the election, Jeb continued to take jabs at himself. In 2017, when asked if he thought Trump obstructed justice, Jeb said, "No, I don't, but who cares what I think?" He seemed to be utterly defeated by his plummeting popularity over the course of the election, but Jeb simply didn't know why he was so unpopular. When one publication asked Jeb to explain the slow decline, he said, "Hell if I know. I don't really care,"—the words of a broken man.
When He Lost The Election For Governor Of Florida He Asked His Mom How Long It Would Hurt
Jeb seems to always come in second to his older brother, George W., but perhaps no other time was it more biting than the night he lost his bid for Florida governor the same evening George W. won his bid for governor of Texas in 1994. It was an extremely bittersweet night for Jeb, who claimed he was joyful that his brother won. However, Barbara Bush said in her diary that her younger son was reeling from the loss. She wrote that it "kills [her] that he hurts so," and that Jeb asked "how long it [was] going to hurt." Mrs. Bush called Jeb a "good sport" for his ability to put his sadness aside and be happy for his brother.
He Was Relentlessly Bullied By Donald Trump During The Campaign
Jeb Bush just got contact lenses and got rid of the glasses. He wants to look cool, but it's far too late. 1% in Nevada!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 17, 2016
Some of the most memorable moments in Jeb's campaign came not from the presidential hopeful himself, but from his rival and eventual president, Donald Trump. Trump relentlessly bullied Jeb throughout the campaign; during one debate, for instance, Trump incessantly talked over Jeb while rolling his eyes and sarcastically calling him a "tough guy." The mocking was so bad that SNL made fun of the pair's dynamic.
His Father, George H.W. Bush, Introduced Jeb's Children To Ronald Reagan As "The Brown Ones"
In 1974, Jeb married Columba Bush, a Mexican-American woman with whom he has three children. Their story seems like a fairy-tale: the couple met in Mexico while Bush was on a high school trip and have been married for nearly 50 years. In 1988, George H.W. Bush, former president and Jeb's father, introduced Jeb's children to then-president Ronald Reagan as "the little brown ones." Considering how much Jeb revered his father, it must have been a harsh blow.