It was a big central Texas debut Friday for George P. Bush. The Land Commission candidate with the well-known political last name spoke in New Braunfels at a public policy conference.
Bush was greeted with hugs and handshakes at the annual Texas Legislative Conference. As the Keynote Speaker the first time candidate promised not to be too confrontational at the bi-partisan event.
"That should be easy to do right in today's political environment," said Bush as the crowd laughed with him
Bush, who is running for Texas land commissioner kept to a script with strong Republican themes. He spoke about education reform with a charter school spin. He called on state lawmakers to put more money into veteran affairs programs and said Texas can help make the country more energy independent.
"And if the country is going to service our $17 trillion debt and our roughly $1.3 trillion dollar annual operation deficit we need to leverage all of the forms of energy to us here not only in Texas but throughout the country," said Bush.
The conference is familiar territory for speakers with Bush as a last name. However, after speaking and with his media availability canceled, George P. was quickly ushered out the room, steering clear of any potential rough water.
Politically this stop in New Braunfels, for the young Bush, is like taking a lazy trip down one of the rivers here. But if he is to be the future of the GOP, Bush will have to jump into the deep end.
George P. Bush joins Senators Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio as part of the new Republican effort to reach out to the Hispanic voter. But unlike Cruz who won with an outsider Tea Party campaign and Rubio with his rags to riches story, Bush comes to the game with an old guard pedigree.
So was his speech Friday, which was far from polished or inspiring, a difference maker? State Representative John Kuempel, ( R ) Seguin, who is a family friend and also a second generation Texas politician, was asked if he thought the young candidate can make the political jump.
"Oh yeah, absolutely I don't think he'll have any problem, he is going to jump right in and keep going," said Rep Kuemple.
It will be a sink or swim situation kept afloat with political campaign contributions. So far donations have not dried up. They've topped a million dollars according to recent reports.