I wouldn’t go this far, but there are some good points here, from a reader:
I’m merely an amateur when it comes to political observation, but it seems to be utter rubbish to me that Bush is “anti-establishment” in any way at all.
As ideology goes, he’s pretty moderate, as the national establishment is (and distgustingly so, at times, which is why I so often return fund-raising letters with a nasty letter of my own along the lines of “not a dime until you get serious about conservative ideas”.
He was a relatively popular governor in the biggest state in the Union and one of the longest-serving (he was in his 3rd term when he ran for President).
His family connections are well known, so I think it can suffice to say that the Bush family *IS* the establishment.
He won the primary of 2000 *because* the establishment picked him, not in spite of it.
In every way since then, Bush has been the establishment; take his support for various candidates, for example: I know of a particular congressman in Texas — Hall — who survives politically only because of the support of President Bush, and then there’s Lincoln Chafee, and many others that should have been tossed overboard. Also consider his lack of support for candidates that were shamefully stabbed in the back by the national GOP elites (Santorum, etc).
He certainly has his own set of political skills, and people happen to like him, but there is nothing even superficially anti-establishment about him at all.
Correction: What this guy says:
Your reader makes two factual errors here:
“He was a relatively popular governor in the biggest state in the Union and one of the longest-serving (he was in his 3rd term when he ran for President). “
First, Texas is not the biggest state in the Union, either in area or in population. Second, President Bush was elected governor of Texas in 1994 and was inaugurated in 1995, meaning he had been governor for less than six years in 2000. His relative inexperience was often contrasted with Al Gore’s long record of doing whatever it is that Al Gore ever did in office.