The Corner

Jeb’s the First Republican with a Positive Agenda? Really?

The New Yorker’s political correspondent on Jeb Bush’s speech today in Detroit, where he spoke highly of so-called reform conservatism:

This is, as Eliana pointed out, either sloppy or ignorant. Jeb’s speech was piggybacking on policy and political work done by a number of conservative intellectuals — that has already been picked up eagerly by at least couple prominent senators, Mike Lee and Marco Rubio. One of them definitely isn’t running for president, but one of them likely is — and Andrew Smith, an intern at the National Review Institute, explains in a piece today just how comprehensive Rubio’s vision, is, and how different it is from much of the anti-Obama work on the right. Sure, it doesn’t have the support of all or most of the party yet, but it’s out there.

Given the lack of any specifics or controversy in Jeb’s speech — besides his allusion to the existence of an opportunity gap — I also don’t see what there is to “quibble with.”

Lizza basically retracted his statement with the defense that he feels Rubio et al.’s agenda hasn’t been articulated “with consistency” and has been overshadowed by opposition to Obama. Yes, I would hope sitting Republican politicians spend a bit of time opposing a Democratic president.

Patrick Brennan was a senior communications official at the Department of Health and Human Services during the Trump administration and is former opinion editor of National Review Online.

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