Eyeing 2016, Jeb Bush keeps profile high with D.C. appearances

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Republican Jeb Bush is keeping his public profile high with multiple appearances in Washington on Monday as he decides whether to run for president.

The former Florida governor attended a fundraiser for Republican Senate hopeful Bill Cassidy, less than a week before Cassidy faces incumbent Democratic U.S. Sen. Mary Landrieu in a runoff election that could increase the GOP’s new majority.

As the only unresolved Senate contest in the 2014 midterm season, the Louisiana election has drawn interest from several potential presidential candidates. Texas U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, Florida U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio and Kentucky U.S. Sen. Rand Paul have already raised money or campaigned on Cassidy’s behalf.

“Republicans made history earlier this month, and we have the opportunity to build on our majority,” Bush wrote in a fundraising message formally endorsing Cassidy over the weekend, calling him his “friend.”

While in Washington, Bush also is expected to address The Wall Street Journal’s CEO Council Monday evening, an invitation-only gathering of chief executives who generate more than $2 trillion in annual revenue. The participants also represent major political donors.

Bush will participate in a question-and-answer session with a moderator before taking questions directly from CEOs. An adviser said Bush would likely address his policies on education, immigration and tax policy at the event, although the discussion may drift into foreign policy.

Bush, a son of one former president and brother of another, is seen as the early favorite of establishment-minded Republicans eager to reclaim the White House in 2016. While he would be a force in the Republican primary, Bush would face criticism from the party’s conservative wing unhappy with his positions on immigration and education reform.