Will George H.W. Bush vote for Clinton?

Sources say former Republican President told a gathering he'd vote for Hillary Clinton. His spokesman: He's not commenting on the race.

Ben Ariel,

Former President George H.W. Bush
Former President George H.W. Bush
Reuters

Former President George H.W. Bush said in a room of roughly 40 people Monday that he would vote for Hillary Clinton in November, sources close to Bush said Tuesday, according to CNN.

Representatives of the Bush family are declining to publicly acknowledge the former president's decision, but sources close to Bush told the news network that he shared his plans with board members of the bipartisan Points of Light Foundation during what he believed was a private gathering in Kennebunkport, Maine.

Bush did not make a formal announcement during the meeting, and it's not clear everyone in the room heard him, although multiple sources did.

The former Republican president's decision to vote for a Democratic nominee is a stunning political move that comes just 49 days from the election, and less than a week before Clinton and Donald Trump square off in their first debate, noted CNN.

News of the former President’s support for Clinton came first on Facebook from Kathleen Hartington Kennedy Townsend, Robert F. Kennedy's daughter and the former Maryland lieutenant governor.

She reportedly posted a photo of herself with George H.W. Bush, along with the caption: "The President told me he's voting for Hillary!!"

Bush family representatives declined to respond publicly.

"The vote President Bush will cast as a private citizen in some 50 days will be just that: a private vote cast in some 50 days. He is not commenting on the presidential race in the interim," Bush spokesman Jim McGrath said in a statement quoted by CNN.

Sources with knowledge of the conversation told CNN they were surprised and disappointed that Kennedy Townsend had publicly shared a private conversation with the former president.

Kennedy Townsend declined to comment through a spokesman at the Rock Creek Group, where she works as managing director. She later took down the Facebook post.

Neither George H.W. Bush nor his son, George W. Bush, had weighed in on the general election -- even as Trump savaged George W. Bush's decision to go to war in Iraq. However, many of the 41st and 43rd presidents' Cabinet secretaries and national security officials have backed Clinton, noted CNN.

Another of George H.W. Bush’s sons, Jeb Bush who sought the Republican nomination but dropped out after several primary losses, has said he would not vote for Trump but also ruled out voting for Clinton.

When Bush was still in the running for the Republican nomination, he directly attacked Trump during the televised debates, but ultimately that did not help his campaign.




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