Until recent weeks, Team Bush hasn’t paid a lot of attention to the rising star from Wisconsin. But after Scott Walker’s repeated and consistent positioning in the polls it’s becoming impossible for Jeb to ignore him.
And now the attacks have begun in what is being seen as the emerging rivalry for the lead car in the Republican fight for the 2016 nomination – the underdog versus the old dog.
Walker has been making veiled attacks on Bush for weeks with references to needing someone with a ‘fresh, new’ perspective and that the party shouldn’t ‘look to the past’. Those jabs are starting to land now that Walker has a newfound perch from which to send them, reports the Washington Post.
That those blows are landing is evidenced best by the fact that surrogates for the Bush campaign have been increasingly taking to social media and elsewhere with shots of their own. Pro-Bush attorney Al Cardenas implied via Twitter that Walker is a flip-flopper on immigration and ethanol, a label that bruised Mitt Romney in both the 2008 and 2012 election cycles.
The flipper label was further peddled in a recent email to the press by another Bush supporter, Ana Navarro, in which she explained the only reason Walker has not been attacked for his change in positions is that he’s not been in the limelight long enough.
With RCP’s average at a combined 31 points between Bush and Walker coupled with at least four other candidates over or near double-digits, the GOP primary race may already be set with a final four plus two wild cards.