George H.W. Bush: Trump Is A 'Blowhard'

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Former presidents George H.W. Bush and George W. Bush have never been fans of President Donald Trump, and the pair's harsh words toward their fellow commander in chief in a new book have received a scathing reply from the White House. 

Historian Mark Updegrove's upcoming book, "The Last Republicans," is based on several interviews with the former presidents and contains their most direct public criticisms of Trump. 

"I don't like him," George H.W. Bush says of Trump in the book, according to CNN. "I don't know much about him, but I know he's a blowhard. And I'm not too excited about him being a leader."

The elder Bush made those comments to Updegrove in May 2016.

The younger Bush shares his father's feelings on Trump.

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"This guy doesn't know how to be president," he told Updegrove.

A White House official fired back at the former presidents, telling CNN, "If one presidential candidate can disassemble a political party, it speaks volumes about how strong a legacy its past two presidents really had." 

"And that begins with the Iraq war, one of the greatest foreign policy mistakes in American history," the official continued. "President Trump remains focused on keeping his promises to the American people by bringing back jobs, promoting an 'America First' foreign policy and standing up for the forgotten men and women of our great country." 

Neither Bush voted for Trump, confirming in the book that the elder voted for Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton and the younger left that part of his ballot blank. 

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Publicly speaking out against a sitting president is a new activity for the Bushes. For eight years, George W. Bush declined to comment on President Barack Obama. 

"I don't think it's good for the country to have a former president undermine a current president," he told conservative talk show host Sean Hannity in 2014, according to The Washington Times. "I think it's bad for the presidency, for that matter."

The younger Bush's thinking appears to have changed, at least when it comes to Trump.

In October, George W. Bush delivered a speech, which did not mention Trump by name, but was interpreted as a criticism of the president's leadership, according to The Washington Post. 

"We've seen our discourse degraded by casual cruelty," Bush said in the speech. "Bullying and prejudice in our public life sets a national tone and provides permission for cruelty and bigotry. The only way to pass along civic values is to first live up to them."

Sources: CNN, The Washington Times, The Washington Post / Featured Image: CIA/Flickr / Embedded Images: Seth Wenig/AP via Chicago Tribune, Getty Images via BBC

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