The solely two residing Republicans presidents to precede Donald Trump overtly castigated him in interviews final yr, a unprecedented rebuke revealed in a brand new e book on President George W. Bush and his father.
Former president George H.W. Bush mocked Trump as a “blowhard” and voted for a Democrat over him, whereas the youthful Bush frightened aloud that Trump would destroy the concept of a Republican president in all however identify, based on “The Last Republicans,” which is scheduled to go on sale later this month.
The creator, Mark Updegrove, interviewed the Bushes final yr — lengthy earlier than Trump’s inauguration — and located neither wished to see the coarse, populist campaigner develop into president.
“I don’t like him,” George H.W. Bush informed Updegrove in May 2016, based on CNN. “I don’t know much about him, but I know he’s a blowhard. And I’m not too excited about him being a leader.”
A month earlier, Trump had famously cited himself as his personal finest international coverage adviser. “Because I have a very good brain and I’ve said a lot of things,” stated the candidate, who had no diplomatic or navy expertise.
Upon studying this, Updegrove informed CNN, George W. Bush informed him: “Wow, this guy doesn’t know what it means to be president.”
Those feedback got here as Trump neared the Republican nomination for president, having vanquished most different contenders, together with one other member of the Bush household, former Florida governor Jeb Bush.
George W. Bush did not anticipate Trump to win the final election, based on the creator.
“When Trump started to rise, I think he became concerned because he saw this populism of Donald Trump getting in the way of America’s position in the world,” stated Updegrove, who based the National Medal of Honor Museum this yr, after a number of years as director of LBJ Presidential Library.
As he watched Trump’s marketing campaign, the youthful Bush feared he would “be the last Republican president,” the creator informed CNN.
“And it wasn’t just about Hillary Clinton becoming president,” he stated. “It was because Donald Trump represented everything that the Bushes abhorred.”
Trump stood for rudeness, worldwide isolationism and weak management within the eyes of the Bushes, based on CNN. This would monitor with a speech George W. Bush gave final month, by which he did not identify the president however lamented these identical vices and politics that “seems more vulnerable to conspiracy theories and outright fabrication.”
Despite such reservations by the Bushes and different institution Republicans, Trump, who has made greater than 1,300 false or deceptive claims in lower than a yr and virtually continuously insults his many rivals, together with upending the Republican main with stinging badaults on “low energy” Jeb Bush, did win the presidency.
[George W. Bush’s anti-Trump manifesto, annotated]
It’s uncommon within the trendy political period for former presidents to overtly criticize their successors.
Trump’s instant predecessor, Barack Obama, whose Democratic administration has been endlessly berated by Trump, typically limits his rebuttals to badaults on Trump’s insurance policies — by no means the person himself. And all 5 residing ex-presidents partnered with Trump (who appeared through video feed) for a hurricane fundraiser simply final month.
[‘Not the America I know’: George W. Bush’s daughter desires you to recollect his speech on Islam]
But not solely did the Bush presidents lament the prospect of a Trump presidency, Updegrove informed CNN — they even shunned their occasion’s nominee on Election Day.
The youthful Bush reportedly ticked “None of the above” when it got here time to decide on a president.
The elder Bush informed the creator he voted for Trump’s rival Hillary Clinton, a Democrat.
Five ex-presidents name for unity — and donations — at hurricane profit live performance