Used to be when the president came to Florida, it was customary for our governor to man-hug him, but with Charlie Crist out of office, that tradition is long gone. During his quick day trip in Miami today, President Obama met both Gov. Rick Scott and former Gov. Jeb Bush and had cordial interactions with them.
Scott greeted Obama on the tarmac at Miami International Airport. Scott and Obama exchanged a quick handshake and seemingly exchanged pleasantries after the president exited Air Force One. Of course, Scott today claimed final victory in keeping the Obama-championed high-speed rail project out of the Sunshine State, but the encounter was too brief for any sort of substantive policy discussion.
Shortly after landing, the president was on his way to deliver remarks on education reform at Miami Central High School, where he was introduced by none other than Jeb Bush.
Obama called Bush a "champion of education reform" and joked that "aside from being the former governor of the state, Jeb is best known as the brother of Marvin Bush.''
"Apparently the rest of the family also did some work in Washington back in the day," Obama added. "His family exemplifies public service." But Obama mentioned neither President Bush by name.
The New York Times reports that after introducing the president, "Mr. Bush sat expressionless on a stool behind him, his hands clasped tightly in his lap."
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But the appearance was meant to underscore bipartisan efforts to reform education in America, and Bush himself suggested that Obama make his appearance at Miami Central.
The president is set to spend the remainder of his day in Miami delivering remarks at two fundraisers for the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee: one at the Fontainebleau and another at a private residence in Miami Beach.
Obama is scheduled to leave Miami at 8:30.