Heard a story about Jeb Bush I think you should hear. People who know Jeb Bush always describe him as was one of the nicest, kindest people you could meet. But if the following doesn’t make you think “compassionate” and indeed “presidential” I don’t know what will.
My nephew’s brother-in-law, Josh, is severely disabled with cerebral palsy. His father, Darrell, took him to Tallahassee at a time when Jeb Bush was governor of Florida, where Darrell spoke at a conference in the Capitol building on serving the handicapped of Florida.
After the conference, Darrell on a whim decided to see if he could take Josh to see Governor Bush. He walked to the Governor’s office and proceeded to request a meeting. Of course he was immediately rebuffed, by the “gatekeeper” and was told that the governor was not available.
Somewhat dismayed, Darrell walked down to the Attorney General’s office. The assistant there, thinking something was strange made a call on his behalf, and after receiving a positive reply asked if Darrell and Josh could come back at 2 pm to meet with the governor.
Darrell, pushing his son Josh in his wheelchair, did indeed meet with Governor Bush, who seemed very pleased to see them. However at some point in the conversation, Jeb asked “How do you think the conference went?” Darrell replied, “Fine, Governor, but I just don’t think anyone is listening.”
Jeb stared for a few seconds, picked up the phone and canceled his meetings for the rest of the day.
Darrell and Governor Bush spent the next four hours talking about the plight of the handicapped in Florida. As a result, new programs and modifications to existing programs were launched over the next year based on their conversations.
Thereafter, Darrell had Jeb’s personal email and never failed to get a reply from the Governor. From time to time, Jeb reached out to Darrell to check on Josh, talk about the issues and get advice.
Families with handicapped children are not a huge voting block. To us at PBP, this seems to frame Jeb Bush as very “presidential”, compassionate, decisive and action oriented.
Don’t you wish all politicians worked this way?