Ex-Gov Romney Butters Up Ex-Gov Bush

Despite refusal to endorse, Jeb looms large on Fla. sidelines
By Jonas Oransky,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 25, 2008 12:30 PM CST
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(Newser) – The president’s brother is no longer in office and says he’s staying neutral in Tuesday’s Florida primary, but that hasn’t kept Mitt Romney from hiring Jeb Bush’s staff members, running on his issues—and calling the former governor “quite a guy.” “I love him,” said a smitten Mitt.

In Florida, Bush “is a class by himself in terms of political influence,” says one professor. Romney knows him from the Governors Association, Politico reports, and campaigned for Sunshine State Republicans in 2006. It would be naïve for Romney to expect a Bush endorsement—but if he invokes the former governor’s name enough, voters might not know the difference.