Several Jeb Bush campaign workers are already shopping their résumés with Florida political consultants as expectations mount inside his team that their candidate won’t push on after South Carolina.
“I can unequivocally tell you that people are looking for work, because they say they’ve been led to believe that they won’t have a job because the campaign won’t be around any longer or their jobs won’t because the campaign won’t have any money,” said one Republican who helps run one of the Florida campaigns and who is a Bush donor.
Four separate and senior political consultants in Florida said they have been negotiating with potential employees who are preparing for the end of the Bush campaign. The entreaties for new work from these Bush staffers — most of whom are not top-level campaign hands — have markedly increased apace with signs that the former Florida governor is under pressure to exit the race after Saturday’s GOP primary.
“I have people in [Marco] Rubio’s campaign and various campaigns I talk to and said ‘Hey, if it doesn’t work out for you, come and work for us,’” said one of the consultants. “Suddenly in the past week, I’m getting calls and they’re asking me: ‘Are you looking for somebody?’ And those people are exclusively Jeb people.”
The only consultant who would speak on the record, West Palm Beach’s Randy Nielsen, is a Rubio supporter who is involved in a variety of legislative and local campaigns. He said via text message that Bush campaign workers are a sought-after commodity because “he has some talented folks on his team. A lot of people will sign them up in a NY minute.”
“Staffers are floating résumés now. We’ve been contacted by several. People have gotta eat, you know?” Nielsen said.
It’s been time for Jeb to get out of the race since last fall. Virtually everything he and his advisers have tried has been a spectacular failure. This is the political consultant game, however, hence the comment about talented people on the Bush team who will be hired quickly. That’s not rewarding mediocrity, that’s placing a premium on sheer awfulness.
Nice gig if you can get it.
If the Trump Train is ever to be derailed, Jeb! and Kasich need to leave now and pray that someone sees them as geographically desirable VEEP candidates.
If Jeb! finishes fourth or lower in South Carolina and stays in the race, his ego will be as much to blame for any ensuing general election debacle as Trump’s.