On February 6, 1999, Jeb Bush had been Florida's govenor for just a month. Everything was new to him, from the tiny size of the governor's bathroom door, to fine food at the governor's mansion. He also discovered the power of his voice.
In an email to Brian Crowley, then political editor of the Palm Beach Post, Bush talked about his first 30 days as governor.
Brian, it has been a joyous experience. I get to eat dinner with my family many nights which we didn’t do much of in Miami. Unfortunately, the food at home is verrrrrryyyyy good leaving me with no chance yet to lose any weight. Most important, Columba is happy and so is Noelle. When they are happy, I am as well.
The biggest surprise is the volume of my voice. People listen to what I say and do. I am learning to show more self-restraint so as to not restrict a free flow of thinking that could yield a better decision. That has been hard for me. IN fact, I would say I have a long way to go on this. So far, it has not been a problem since I have known where I want to go on decision but that will change.
I really enjoy the work. It is important and meaningful. Education reform, a drug policy, the largest tax cuts in State history, child welfare and developmentally disabled reform and adequate funding, an ethics package of significance, the Lawton Chiles endowment idea, the end of the bullet train and Powerball and a good solid budget got us off to a good start.
A growing challenge is to focus on the things I need to focus on and slow the pace down for the rest of the team. We got off to a fast and fine start but we need to slow down to follow up and let our partners, the legislature, digest and absorb our suggestions. That will be easier to do with me less visible than I have been.
One of the more interesting events was the one that I saw you at. Talk about “large and enthusiastic crowds” to use a phrase of last year!
Yes, I did buy my beautiful wife a music box for about $160 over the QVC web page site. She is gonna love it.
The governor’s bathroom door is the smallest in Florida. It requires a sideways twist to make it in.
The water pressure up here is great. Great showers!
The toughest decision has been in the appointments process. Friends who were expecting jobs have not gotten what they want and while I will always do what I think is right, it’s not fun to disappoint.
There is much more but I need to move on. Keep prompting me.