Over the past week, former President George W. Bush has been giving us little appetizers in advance of the main course that is his new book, ranging from his thoughts on former Vice President Dick Cheney to his hurt feelings over Kanye West’s comments post Katrina. But now, a real kicker: Did Bush support presidential candidate Barack Obama in 2008? (via Financial Times)
During the 2008 presidential campaign a group of British officials, which included then-Prime Minister Gordon Brown, visited Bush in the Oval Office, the newspaper reported. The meeting came a short time after the president had endorsed Sen. John McCain in the election. During a light chat about the upcoming vote in which they expected Bush to say something nice about his one time Republican rival, he reportedly told the group, “I probably won’t even vote for the guy.”
Whoah. Full stop. Come again?
“I had to endorse him,” Bush said. “But I’d have endorsed Obama if they’d asked me.”
It’s no secret that McCain and Bush weren’t exactly fishing buddies and in his memoir Decision Points he is critical of McCain’s handling of the 2008 financial crisis. The two also had a contentious relationship during the 2000 presidential campaign in which McCain challenged Bush for the Republican nomination.
Naturally, the Bush camp is denying the report, calling it “ridiculous and untrue.”
“President Bush proudly supported John McCain in the election and voted for him,” said Bush spokesman David Sherzer to Politico.