Jeb Bush Seems to Praise Trump Policies During Talk at Milken Institute Global Conference

Former Florida governor also offers details about his bid to buy Miami Marlins with Derek Jeter.

May 2, 2017 1:00 pm
Jeb Bush, former Governor of Florida, speaks at the Milken Institute Global Conference in Beverly Hills, California, U.S., on Monday, May 1, 2017. The conference is a unique setting that convenes individuals with the capital, power and influence to move the world forward meet face-to-face with those whose expertise and creativity are reinventing industry, philanthropy and media. Photographer: David Paul Morris/Bloomberg via Getty Images
Jeb Bush, former Governor of Florida, speaks at the Milken Institute Global Conference in Beverly Hills, California, U.S., on Monday, May 1, 2017. (David Paul Morris/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

BEVERLY HILLS – In an interview that included his pitch to buy the Miami Marlins, former Republican presidential candidate Jeb Bush threw his audience an unexpected curveball by seemingly praising President Trump.

“The better way to follow Trump is his deeds, not his words,” Bush told the crowd at the Beverly Hills Hilton ballroom during the Milken Institute’s Global Conference on Tuesday. But as someone who famously ended up on the wrong side of those words during a biting campaign, Bush reserved praise for some of the deeds he had seen come out of the White House in the first 100 days—including the pick of Supreme Court Justice Neil M. Gorsuch and assembling a “first-rate” foreign policy team.

Bush did caution that “Sometimes words do have consequences,” and expressed hope that the president would listen to First Lady Melania Trump and cut back on the tweeting. He worried that the president has struck an uncertain tone in his support for South Korea at a time when the region is on high alert.

Bush’s philosophy on tax cuts mirrors the one incoming from White House—that simplifying the code could “help drain the swamp.”

He also opened up about immigration, an area where he differed markedly from his opponent during the Republican primary campaign. Bush stressed that he believes in the legal immigration system, but 85 percent of immigrants come through family exemptions, which he called an overly broad definition that crowds out other deserving candidates. So, like Trump, he believes there must be a change to the system to make it fairer.

But many observers at the talk were most interested in the status of Bush’s joint bid for the Miami Marlins with former Yankees star (and future Hall of Famer) Derek Jeter.

“My dad claims he invented the phrase, ‘You da Man,’” joked the younger Bush. “He cried, ‘You are the man Rusty (Staub) as he rounded third,” he added.

Though his brother, former-President George W. Bush, once owned the Texas Rangers, Bush will leave the day-to-day management of baseball operations to his partner. Jeter, after all, does own five championship rings.


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