Last summer, I wrote a column suggesting that the idea of Jeb Bush running for president in 2012 wasn't nearly as farfetched as it seems. I basically got sneered at, but I think the case for Jeb has only gotten stronger. He has the necessary experience, seems likely to unite the various factions of the GOP, and--polls suggest--wouldn't have as hard a time overcoming his last name as you might imagine. A few others have come around to this way of thinking. In November, David Frum wondered if a "Draft Jeb" movement might spring up as a way of blocking Sarah Palin from the nomination. Now, National Review has put Jeb on the cover, and Rich Lowry has penned an urgent-sounding accompanying column essentially demanding that Bush hit the trail. Conservatives must be getting antsy. To the existing reasons why Bush might run, Lowry adds one that hadn't occurred to me, but that makes a funny kind of sense: If Jeb doesn't run now, Lowry argues, he'll be over the hill by the time 2016 comes around--ten years removed from office and faced with stiff competition from the next generation of conservative hopefuls, including Marco Rubio, Chris Christie, and (though Lowry doesn't mention him) Bobby Jindal.
"I'm exploiting the maximum of what you can ask a piece of metal to do."