Can You Be Too Rich (Or Too Thin) To Run For President?
Conventional wisdom has it that you can never be too rich or too thin, and that’s true if your goal is to leave such a beautiful corpse that you make people jealous even at your opulent open-casket funeral. When it comes to running for president of the United States, though, the rules are often different. The Wall Street Journal famously dinged candidate Barack Obama for being skinny (“Obama might find low body fat a drawback”) and now Vanity Fair is asking whether Jeb Bush might find himself weighed down by all the cash in his pockets.
How much cash, exactly? I’m glad you asked:
According to the Times, Bush has worked for or with Lehman Brothers, a soap maker whose books were cooked, and an Affordable Care Act-supporting hospital owner. He has raked in at least $3.2 million from board positions, charges $50,000 for speeches, and is said to be paid more than $1 million a year by Barclays, the firm that absorbed much of Lehman after Bush’s bid to have Mexican billionaire Carlos Slim Helú save the failing bank.
He’s made so much money, in fact, that one Bush supporter went on the record with the paper to cast doubt as to whether or not the presumptive candidate would even want to pause the gravy train to run for president.
Eh, Congress is all rich people now. Some folks, like Frank Underwood, find that it’s not satisfying enough to have houses and drivers if you don’t also get missile codes. And, of course, having more money than Scrooge McDuck never stopped Romney from running.
The name Bush is, in the 21st century, a political albatross on par with having closed down several lanes of a bridge for revenge or something. If you’re okay with waving in another scion of a crumbling dynasty, could you actually care that the man in question is also a professional plutocrat?