Jeb Bush Announces 'Actively Exploring' Possible 2016 Presidential Run

Aaron Turpen

Jeb Bush — former governor of Florida, brother to former U.S. President George W. Bush and son of former president George H.W. Bush as well as grandson to Senator Prescott Bush — announced on Facebook that he has decided to "actively explore the possibility of running for President of the United States."

The post also included his promise to establish a "Leadership PAC" to "help facilitate conversations" about the challenges facing the United States.

The Facebook announcement, which was immediately captured and shared on NPR, was followed up by a Twitter post from Jeb Bush with the 140-or-less version.

ABC News reports that the timing is all about sending a message. Jeb Bush made the announcement yesterday because, a top Republican told them, it sends a message to donors and activists in the GOP that he's serious. The announcement may affect Republican Marco Rubio's chances who may now be seen as "the other guy from Florida." Rubio told ABC News that he would not base his decision on whether or not Jeb Bush was in the race.

jeb-hillary-425Meanwhile, speculation about the matchup for 2016 is already happening. Most are assuming the Democratic candidate will be Hillary Clinton, then guessing what would happen in a Bush vs. Clinton rematch. MSNBC jumped on that theme, calling it a "family feud" and pointing out that the two are politically much the same, being towards the middle. Meanwhile, the two family political dynasties are closer than might make voters in the D and R camps equally nervous. Bill Clinton regularly visits Jeb Bush's father George and Jeb literally gave Hillary an award. Barbara Bush said she loves Bill Clinton and Jeb Bush's brother George is a common sight at Clinton charity events.

What the Jeb Bush announcement does, though, is force others who are considering a 2016 run to push ahead their timing. The Miami Herald says that Jeb's announcement is "implicitly pressuring other Republicans to decide whether to run.." The Herald also quotes a Republican insider who says that the public pressure from big name donors for Romney to run was actually a back-door way to push Jeb Bush into announcing early. If Romney ran, the GOP vote would split, but if he doesn't, Jeb would lead.

Regardless, Jeb Bush has made the announcement that he will run in 2016, at least he may as well have, and we can expect that the Democrats likely to run will begin lobbing mud his way soon.

[ Photo via. ABC News ]