Is Jeb Short For Something? The Bush Brother Has A Curious First Name
On Monday, six months after he first hinted about it, former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush officially unveiled his campaign to be the next president of the United States. Amid questions about his platform and work as governor, you might find yourself wondering about his name. It's kind of an unusual name. Is "Jeb" Jeb Bush's real name?
Like, is Jeb short for anything, or is that his full, legal name? Are we sure it's not Jed? That's definitely a name. Or maybe Jeb is a shortened form of Jebediah? Nope. According to NPR, the Republican nominee hopeful's legal name is not Jeb Bush, but John Ellis Bush. "Jeb" is a clever acronym of John Ellis Bush. Who knew?
In Barbara Bush's 2003 book, Reflections: Life After the White House, she reveals that John Ellis Bush takes his namesake from his uncles:
Our son John Ellis Bush, "Jeb," the great Governor of Florida, was named after 41's brother Jon and Nan's husband, "Sandy" Ellis —Alexander Ellis, Jr. — whom we both admired and loved.
The Washington Post joked Monday about Jeb, writing:
Saying "Jeb Bush" is like saying "ATM machine," in that the "b" in "Jeb" stands for "Bush." So technically we should call him Je Bush, and you can expect that to become official Washington Post style.
Interestingly enough, the name Jeb was also passed on to his son; Jeb Bush's son is also named Jeb, John Ellis Bush Jr.
With his campaign logo prominently featuring his name — weirdly, Bush's logo is just his first name and an exclamation point — you aren't going to see Jeb go away anytime soon. After Bush announced the logo on Twitter Sunday morning, everyone was quick to poke fun at it with jokes about superheroes, dog food, and recycled logos, despite Jeb's! enthusiasm.
In the 2016 presidential race, Jeb isn't the only candidate with a nickname. Republican Ted Cruz, the junior Texas senator who announced his campaign in March, doesn't go by his legal name either. His legal name is actually Rafael Cruz, according to The Dallas Morning News, which published the senator's birth certificate in August 2013.
Also! Jeb Bush isn't the only Bush with a nickname. Not the first in his family to work in politics (obviously), brother George Walker Bush, the 43rd president of the United States, goes by George W. Bush, while his father George Herbert Walker Bush, the 41st president of the United States, goes by George H.W. Bush.
Now that Jeb's officially announced, you should get ready to hear a lot more about Jeb!. Or Jeb. Or John Ellis Bush. Or something.