It is rare reports of someone defeated in a U.S. House primary spark nationwide and even international attention.
But that was precisely the case in Texas' historically Republican 22nd District (suburban) last Tuesday, where Pierce Bush, grandson and nephew of the two Republican presidents, placed third in a 15-candidate primary for Congress.
"Grandson of George H.W. Bush First in Family to Lose a Texas Election in More Than 40 Years," blared the headline in The Washington Examiner, referring to the defeat for Congress of Uncle George W. Bush in the Midland-area district in 1978.
"Was It His Name or Campaign?" chorused The Texas Tribune, suggesting Republican voters had grown tired of nominating another Bush and hinting, not-so-subtly, the era of American political dynasties was over.
Not so at all, says Stephen Hess, Brookings Institution Senior Fellow Emeritus and author of the critically acclaimed "America's Political Dynasties: From Adams to Clinton."
Hess, who spoke to Newsmax days after Bush's defeat, said "I never knew of this Bush — never heard of him. His cousin, [Texas Land Commissioner] George P. Bush, was elected statewide [in 2014 and '18] and no one said the Bush family is dead politically."
Hess pointed out, Pierce Bush had two main strikes against him going into the primary, he started his campaign barely three months before the primary — long after other rivals were going strong — and he relocated into the 22nd District from the neighboring 7th, which, ironically, was represented in the House by grandfather George H.W. from 1966-70.
In contrast to uncles George W. and Jeb, Pierce Bush said he supports President Donald Trump's agenda — although he and his wife once participated in a pro-immigration parade directed against the president's policies on the issue.
"Pierce Bush didn't win, but he has at least two cousins — George P. and [Florida businessman] Jeb Bush, Jr. — who will be going places in politics," Hess said. "There are also the five sons of Mitt Romney who could easily be candidates themselves someday. And Jimmy Carter's grandson [former Georgia State Senator and 2014 Democratic gubernatorial nominee] Jason Carter may run for something again. So, political dynasties are far from over in the U.S."
Many might say past is prologue for predicting the future in American political history, but that does not mean it is always doomed to repeat itself or rhyme. Much like many things in life, we wear the watches and history has all of the time.
John Gizzi is chief political columnist and White House correspondent for Newsmax. For more of his reports, Go Here Now.
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