Republican Jeb Bush has given a luncheon speech to the Detroit Economic Club, the first in a series of speeches that may define his campaign if he decides to run for president. Rough Cut (no reporter narration).
ROUGH CUT (NO REPORTER NARRATION) Republican Jeb Bush sharply attacked what he says is a "liberal mindset" that has denigrated the value of hard work while urging reforms to give more power at the state and local levels in a speech that will road test an optimistic theme for his expected 2016 presidential campaign. Bush gave a luncheon speech to the Detroit Economic Club, the first in a series of speeches aimed at defining why he may be considering a run for the Republican presidential nomination and what policies he would pursue if elected. Bush is viewed as a front runner in the Republican race now that 2012 nominee Mitt Romney has decided against a third White House run. Bush leads national polls over a crowded field of potential rivals including Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker and New Jersey Governor Chris Christie. At this stage most potential candidates are taking shots at President Barack Obama and trying to separate themselves from the pack. Bush, however, says he wants to run an optimistic campaign and is directing criticism at Washington as a whole. Obama has focused his policies on lifting the middle class and reducing income inequality. His budget blueprint for the next fiscal year, unveiled on Monday, would raise taxes on the wealthy and transfer the benefits to the lower rungs of society. In the coming months, Bush said he will detail "a mix of smart policies and reforms" to tap Americans' ability to innovate in areas such as energy, manufacturing, health care and technology."