Earlier this month, Jeb Bush announced the creation of Right to Rise, a new organization that will serve as a fundraising platform and political action committee. On January 6, Bush, the younger brother of former President George W. Bush, released a video on his Facebook page inviting viewers to join Right to Rise, which he described as “a PAC to support candidates that believe in conservative principles to allow all Americans to rise up.”
This, coupled with a recent announcement about his intention to explore the possibility of running for President in 2016, are getting political insiders buzzing. According to the New York Times, “Jeb Bush on Tuesday delivered a powerful message about two of the most vital ingredients in a presidential campaign, money and ideas, transforming himself from a figure who once seemed paralyzed by ambivalence over a White House rum into the most forceful presence within the emerging Republican field.” Now it seems that Bush is aggressively pursuing a bid for presidential candidacy by developing his platform and forming relationships with donors.
Bush has already begun appealing to potential donors in New York, where he recently had a meeting with influential figures at KKR & Co.’s headquarters. Reportedly, the meeting was arranged by Ken Mehlman, a political consultant who also serves as KKR’s Global Head of Public Affairs and managed George W. Bush’s 2004 re-election campaign. There is no confirmation whether Mehlman will be assisting in Jeb Bush’s presidential run, but his connection to Bush will certainly help as he begins to raise funds for his campaign.
As Michael Barbaro and Nicholas Confessore point out in the New York Times, The 2016 presidential race is still in a nascent phase, but the competition for major donors, a contest all but visible to the public, has begun in earnest.” Political insiders seem confident that Bush will achieve substantial support for his presidential campaign; there have been reports that Bush will soon be on his way to Washington and elsewhere to begin appealing to other potential donors. Time will tell how Bush, and Right to Rise, fare against competitors.