United States, Washington: The former Florida governor and brother and son of past United States (US) presidents, Jeb Bush, suspended his presidential campaign after a disappointing finish in South Carolina, a state he had counted on to revive his failing campaign. Once assumed a formidable candidate because of his family’s political dynasty, his own substantive reputation and his support from business leaders, Bush withered quickly in a crowded primary field with a base that gravitated to the angry rhetoric of billionaire Donald Trump.
Bush had hoped to secure a foothold as the leading establishment candidate and hang on long enough for the field to winnow and allow a consensus candidate to overtake Trump. Instead, Bush found himself overtaken in the first three Republican nominating contests by Trump as well as by Bush’s one-time protégé, Marco Rubio, a Cuban-American first-term US senator also from Florida. Pressure mounted inside his own circle to drop out. “The people of Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina have spoken, and I really respect their decision so tonight I am suspending my campaign”.
Bush said in South Carolina on Saturday night after Trump was declared the winner of the primary. Bush, in an indirect entreaty to his party not to nominate Trump, said the U.S. “deserves a president for everyone” and that whoever holds the presidency “is a servant, not the master” and must serve with “honor and decency.” While congratulating his rivals for “remaining on the island,” Bush said he had stood his ground, “refusing to bend to the political winds,” and that “despite what you may have heard, ideas matter. Policy matters.” He expressed love and respect for his brother and his father, whom he called “the greatest man alive.”