Jeb Bush, who appears to be seriously considering a run for the White House in 2016, contrasted his foreign-policy vision with President Obama’s at an event hosted by the U.S. Cuba Democracy PAC last week.
At a time when the Obama administration is considering weakening the U.S. embargo of Cuba, popular with Cuban Americans in Florida, Bush called for strengthening the anti-Castro policy, and called for tougher U.S. leadership everywhere.
“Presidents need to set United States’ aspirations and intentions where there is little gap between words and deeds,” Bush said, according to the Miami Herald. “Think of the ‘Russian reset.’ Think of the ‘Syrian red line.’ Think of the ‘pivot to Asia.’ Think of taking out ISIS.”
Allies have less faith in the U.S. while enemies no longer respect or fear it, he said. Bush also pointed to the president’s handling of Afghanistan, Iraq, the Russian invasion of Crimea, and Iran’s nuclear program as examples of the need for a new approach.
Bush also emphasized increased military spending and strengthening free trade, arguing both policies would help the U.S. regain its status as a world leader.
“The United States needs to lead. Lead with humility, lead with respect — but lead,” he said. “We are not an equal partner in a so-called community of nations. We are a leader among equals.”