Jeb Bush suspends presidential campaign

(RNN) – Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush's bid to be the third Bush to occupy the Oval Office has ended.

Bush suspended his campaign Saturday after disappointing finishes in Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina.

He was the would-be heir to the Bush presidential dynasty, but failed to capture the attention of voters, finishing fifth in Iowa where he gained 2.8 percent of the vote.

Bush raised tens of millions of dollars but clashed in debates with Donald Trump, who tagged him with the low-energy label. The confrontations seemed to hurt Bush, who spiraled downward in the polls.

After favorable early numbers, his support gradually dissipated as Trump, Ted Cruz, Ben Carson and fellow Floridian Marco Rubio gained the spotlight.

When he announced his run, Bush joined a Republican slate that was chock full of candidates looking to reclaim the White House for the GOP after eight years of Democratic residency. He joined a field that included Rubio, Rick Santorum, Mike Huckabee, Rand Paul, Carson, Carly Fiorina, Rick Perry, George Pataki, Lindsey Graham and Cruz.

Bush was viewed as the most established Republican in the lot. Since serving two terms as Florida's governor (1999 through 2007), he had enjoyed respect from fellow Republicans and been queried for advice from conservative leaders.

With a more centrist approach to GOP policies, Bush seemed capable of gaining the votes of neoconservatives, minorities and less-radical Republican constituents. The former governor is also fluent in Spanish and seemingly sympathetic to illegal immigrants, which has proven in Florida's general election to attract Latino voters.

George W. Bush, Jeb Bush's older brother and the 43rd president of the United States, has a legacy that makes U.S. voters wary. Post-9/11 engagements in Iraq and Afghanistan have made some Americans weary of war and skeptical about neoconservatives' hawkish foreign policy.

The Iraq War also plagued Jeb Bush. He had trouble clearly stating whether or not the Iraq War was a mistake.

Jeb Bush is the son of the 41st president of the United States, George H.W. Bush. He is married to Columba Bush, a native of Mexico.

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