By JOHN DiSTASO, Editor
CONCORD — A veteran New Hampshire political strategist says former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush has a “natural constituency” in New Hampshire and “room to run if he wants.”
Bush on Wednesday told a Catholic Charities fundraiser in New York, “I’m thinking about running for President,” according to various reports. A Politico report on the Bush statement can be found elsewhere on NHJournal.com.
Bush has long been flirting with the notion of running, but these were his most direct comments yet, and were met with a standing ovation.
Tom Rath, a former Republican National Committee member from New Hampshire, well-respected strategist and supporter of both Presidents George H.W. Bush and George W. Bush, said there is room for still another Bush candidacy in New Hampshire.
“If you look at the evolving Republican field,” he said, “there is a concentration of candidates taking up space right of center. In New Hampshire presidential primaries, there has been a lot of votes for center right candidacies. As of now, that space is open.”
Rath also said that Jeb Bush “has a natural constituency in New Hampshire and room to run if he wants. There are plenty of New Hampshire Republicans and independents who would be very interested in a Jeb Bush run. In fact, he has to some extent frozen that part of the field for the moment.
“There are a lot of New Hampshire Republican who think very highly of his family and of him. I, not surprisingly, am one of those,” Rath said, adding, “I have heard nothing and have no clue. But I am leaving a light on .”