Former Florida governor and probable 2016 Republican presidential candidate Jeb Bush speaks at the First in the Nation Republican Leadership Conference in Nashua, New Hampshire.
(photo credit: REUTERS)
Former Florida governor Jeb Bush has run afoul of Republican donor Sheldon Adelson, a development that could hamper his campaign fundraising efforts as he prepares for a run at the White House.
According to National Review, Adelson was angry over Bush’s refusal to instruct one of his foreign policy advisers, former secretary of state James Baker, not to deliver a speech to the leftist Jewish lobby J Street during its annual convention in Washington.
Baker, a longtime friend and confidante of the Bush family, is a critic of Israel’s current government and its policies. Adelson, meanwhile, is a backer of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and the owner of the pro-Netanyahu daily newspaper Israel Hayom.
Bush’s defiance of Adelson may cost him any chance of procuring campaign donations from the Jewish casino billionaire. Recently, Republican presidential hopefuls took part in what is known as “the Sheldon primary,” a four-day event staged by the Republican Jewish Coalition in Las Vegas.
GOP candidates were seeking to curry favor with Adelson, competing amongst themselves over which of them offers the strongest support for Israel.
“I think he’s lost the Sheldon primary,” one Republican source told National Review.
According to the report, Adelson has yet to decide which candidate he will back, as it is still early in the political calendar.