Jeb Bush says he would have invaded Iraq, just like his brother.

Jeb Bush: I Would Have Invaded Iraq, Too

Jeb Bush: I Would Have Invaded Iraq, Too

The Slatest
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May 10 2015 7:03 PM

Jeb Bush: I Would Have Invaded Iraq, Too

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Former Florida governor Jeb Bush speaks on stage with conservative political commentator Sean Hannity at the annual Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) at National Harbor, Maryland on February 27, 2015.

Photo by NICHOLAS KAMM/AFP/Getty Images

Former Florida governor Jeb Bush would have authorized the 2003 invasion of Iraq, just like his brother George W. Bush did. “Knowing what we know now, would you have authorized the invasion?” Fox News host Megyn Kelly asks Jeb Bush in an interview scheduled to air Monday night. “I would have, and so would have Hillary Clinton, just to remind everybody,” the likely presidential contender said. “And so would almost everybody that was confronted with the intelligence they got.”

Kelly then reiterates the question: “You don’t think it was a mistake?” At that point Bush acknowledges some things should have been done differently. “In retrospect, the intelligence that everybody saw, that the world saw, not just the United States, was faulty,” he said. “And in retrospect, once we invaded and took out Saddam Hussein we didn’t focus on security first.”

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Still, Bush took pains to make sure no one would interpret his words as a criticism of his brother. “By the way, guess who thinks that those mistakes took place as well? George W. Bush,” Jeb Bush said. “Yes, I mean, so just for the news flash to the world, if they’re trying to find places where there’s big space between me and my brother, this might not be one of those.”

Bush also spoke of the need to reform immigration policies. “I mean, there’s got to be a point where we fix this system so that legal immigration is easier than illegal immigration and show some respect for people,” he said.

Daniel Politi has been contributing to Slate since 2004 and wrote the Today’s Papers column from 2006 to 2009. Follow him on Twitter.