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Hundreds of George W Bush officials endorse Biden

The ’43 Alumni for Biden’ super PAC seeks to unseat Donald Trump, who they say is unfit to lead the United States.

Former President George W Bush is aware of the effort, but a spokesman has said he will not wade into the 2020 election [File: David J Phillip/AP Photo]
Former President George W Bush is aware of the effort, but a spokesman has said he will not wade into the 2020 election. 

 

Hundreds of officials who worked for former Republican United States President George W Bush endorsed Democratic White House hopeful Joe Biden on Wednesday, the latest Republican-led group coming out to oppose the re-election of Donald Trump.

The officials, including Cabinet secretaries and other senior people in the Bush administration, have formed a political action committee called “43 Alumni for Biden” to support the former vice president in his November 3 race. Bush was the country’s 43rd president.

The Super PAC launched with a website and Facebook page and plans to release “testimonial videos” praising Biden from high-profile Republicans. It will also will hold get out to vote efforts in the most competitive states.

The group is the latest of several Republican organisations opposing Trump’s re-election, yet another sign that the president has alienated some in his own party, most recently with his response to the coronavirus pandemic and nationwide protests over racial injustice and police brutality against Black Americans following the police killing of George Floyd in late May.

“We know what is normal and what is abnormal, and what we are seeing is highly abnormal. The president is a danger,” Jennifer Millikin, one of the 43 Alumni organisers, who worked on Bush’s 2004 re-election campaign and later in the general services administration, told the Reuters news agency ahead of the launch.

Millikin said the group was not yet ready to name all its members or its donors, but among those listed on the website as making up the organising committee are Genevieve Woodard Hartley, David Almacy, Michael Turk, Karen Kirksey, and Michael Brown. It has to provide a list of initial donors to the Federal Election Commission by October.

Bush’s office has been informed about the group, but the former president is not involved and has not indicated if he approves of its aims, she said.

Freddy Ford, a spokesman for Bush, said Bush had retired “and won’t be wading into this election”.

Bush, who is still admired by many moderate Republicans, won praise for saying the May 25 death in Minneapolis of George Floyd, an unarmed Black man in police custody, reflected a “shocking failure”, and urged that protesters be heard.

Earlier, he released a video calling for Americans to unite in the face of the pandemic.

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