Jeb Bush to Audience: 'Please Clap'

Even supporters want NH to be his last stand
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 4, 2016 2:20 AM CST
Updated Feb 4, 2016 4:00 AM CST
Jeb Bush to Audience: 'Please Clap'
Republican presidential candidate Jeb Bush speaks during a town hall meeting in Keene, NH, on Tuesday.   (Kristopher Radder/The Brattleboro Reformer via AP)

Jeb Bush wasn't exactly overflowing with energy the night after slumping to a sixth-place finish in Iowa, according to MSNBC. At a town hall event in New Hampshire, he had to urge the crowd to "please clap" after his declaration that the "next president needs to be quieter" and he "won't be out there blowharding, talking a big game without backing it up" was met with silence. His request was met with applause and some "awkward laughter," reports MSNBC, which notes that the lights went off three times during the event, apparently because the hotel was having electrical problems. Bush only received 2.8% of the vote in Iowa, which, according to some estimates, cost him $2,800 per vote.

Bush told reporters Tuesday evening that he's "continuing on" in the GOP race despite the Iowa result, but even many of his supporters, including major donors, say he'll have to finish above Marco Rubio in New Hampshire to justify staying in, reports the New York Times. "If Rubio beats him badly in New Hampshire, Jeb is toast," says Sen. Lindsey Graham, a Bush supporter who has been stumping for him in the state. But unlike Chris Christie or John Kasich, Bush has the funds and the organization to stay in the race indefinitely, which some Republicans fear could hand the nomination to Donald Trump or Ted Cruz if it prevents Rubio from emerging as the clear alternative to both men. (More Jeb Bush stories.)

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