President Lyndon B. Johnson gives his remarks before the signing the Immigration Act of 1965. [LBJ Library photo #C672-11-WH65 by Frank Wolfe]

Jeb Bush wants to be like LBJ

Feb 19, 2013

by Adam C. Smith
[posted on 2-19-13 in Tampa Bay Times]

SAN ANTONIO -- Jeb Bush wouldn’t say Wednesday night whether or not he’s likely to run for president in 2016, but at Saint Leo University he did suggest a surprising role model for the sort of president he’d strive to be: Lyndon Johnson.

No, the conservative former Florida governor didn’t hail Johnson’s Great Society initiatives. Instead, he hailed Johnson’s forceful, hands-on leadership that among other things produced a 25 percent across-the-board income tax cut.

“He went and he cajoled, he begged, he threatened, he loved, he hugged, he did what leaders do, which is they personally get engaged to make something happen,’’ said Bush, who recently read Robert Caro’s latest Johnson biography.

Bush’s homage to Johnson before several hundred people at the Pasco County campus was one of his only shots at President Barack Obama, who has earned a reputation for avoiding hands-on negotiating with congressional leaders. read more