Jeb Bush said he would be a more fiscally conservative president than his brother as the Republican presidential candidate appeared as a guest on Stephen Colbert’s inaugural episode of “The Late Show” on Tuesday night.
Colbert asked Bush to differentiate himself from his brother, President George W. Bush, to which the former Florida governor copped to being “younger” and “better looking.”
But when pressed on policy differences, Bush critiqued his brother’s inability to bring fiscal restraint to Washington.
“He should have brought the hammer down on the Republicans when they were spending way too much,” Jeb said of his brother.
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Colbert acknowledged that brothers don’t always agree politically, introducing as an example his own brother who was sitting in the audience and who confirmed their differing partisan persuasions.
“I want your vote,” Bush said to Colbert’s brother, who lives in the early-primary state of South Carolina.
Bush also told the host that his mother was “just joking” when she told NBC News that the country had had enough Bushes and Clintons in the White House before the 2016 race began to heat up.
The comedian further pressed the candidate on whether Washington’s political culture can be changed to which Bush agreed, “We have to restore a degree of civility.”
Tuesday’s late-night appearance comes ahead of a busy Wednesday for the Bush campaign as it begins its first TV advertising in New Hampshire and the candidate is set to unveil a major tax overhaul proposal in a major economic policy address in North Carolina.
Bush’s campaign logo also got a laugh during the interview with Colbert exaggerating the exclamation mark used after the candidate’s first name.
“It connotes excitement,” Bush told Colbert of the logo he’s used since 1994.
During the interview, Bush stuck to highlighting his resume and his vision for the country rather than going after any of his rivals.
“This is the rare TV appearance where he doesn’t have to share the stage with 16 other people,” Colbert said of Bush at the end of the opening monologue, in reference to the crowded Republican presidential field.
However, earlier in the show Colbert compared the electorate’s summer-long fascination with Donald Trump to the inability to resist an Oreo cookie — alternating between cramming cookies into his mouth and playing video clips of Trump on the campaign trail.
Jordan Frasier is a 2016 Campaign Embed covering the Bush Campaign for NBC News. Prior to that he was a producer for Meet the Press and a political researcher during the 2012 campaign.