‘He is retired from presidential politics and has not indicated how he will vote…’
(Claire Russel, Liberty Headlines) A spokesman for former President George W. Bush pushed back on a New York Times report that claimed Bush and other prominent ex-party leaders would not support President Trump’s reelection.
“This is completely made up,” Freddy Ford, Bush’s spokesman, wrote in an email to the Texas Tribune. “He is retired from presidential politics and has not indicated how he will vote.”
The New York Times wrote that Bush, Sen. Mitt Romney of Utah; former Secretary of State Colin Powell; and Cindy McCain, the widow of the late Sen. John McCain “won’t support the reelection of Mr. Trump.”
Even after Ford’s statement, the Times has not updated its reporting. Instead, it buried his statement toward the end of its piece:
“Freddy Ford, a spokesman for Mr. Bush, said the former president would stay out of the election and speak only on policy issues, as he did this week in stating that the country must ‘examine our tragic failures’ on race,” the Times‘s revised report states.
Even if the last Republican president opposed Trump, it would be of little news value since Bush—and most of the other “RINO” figures referenced in the article—already declined to vote for him in the prior election.
In what, at the time, was considered a particularly acrimonious Republican primary, Trump neutralized Bush’s brother Jeb, the early front runner, by waging personal attacks on both of the siblings. Their father, the late former President George H.W. Bush, also vocally criticized Trump.
According to Ford, neither Bush 43 nor former First Lady Laura Bush voted for either major candidate in 2016.
Similarly, Romney said on Monday that he’ll be “staying quiet” about his vote in November. Romney didn’t vote for Trump in 2016.
Shortly after voting to convict Trump during the Senate’s impeachment trial in February, the failed 2012 GOP nominee said he would not vote for the president in 2020 either.
ROMNEY: Going to “stay quiet” on whether he’s voting for someone *other than* Trump, he tells reporters
Deleting previous version of this tweet to clarify. Apologies pic.twitter.com/HXMmsZnhCr
— Kasie Hunt (@kasie) June 8, 2020
But now he plans to keep his vote to himself, telling reporters on Capitol Hill this week that, “I’m not going to be describing who I’ll be voting for.”
Adapted from reporting by the Associated Press