A common refrain these days is that Jeb Bush is locking up big donors and freezing out potential rivals so efficiently that he's cruising toward a sure GOP nomination. No way, writes Peggy Noonan in the Wall Street Journal. So far, she doesn't like what she sees, describing his public forays as "tentative and joyless." He's had one big line to date—"I am my own man"—but Noonan wonders whether that's something a presidential candidate should ever have to utter. Bush is lacking "a fierce sense of engagement, a passionate desire to lead America out of the morass, a fiery—or Churchillian—certainty that he is the man for the moment," she writes.
"In its place we see a softer, wanner I’m smart, accomplished, know policy, and it’s my turn." Republicans want and will demand more, Noonan predicts. If the Democrats want to anoint a candidate in tumultuous times without any real debate, fine, nobody expects anything different. But as for Bush, "no one should bow to his inevitability," she writes. "He doesn’t have a better chance with Republican voters than some other possible candidates, and may have less." Click to read the full column.