Yes, he’s that George Bush—the dynastic spawn, the son of Jebby, nephew of W., and grandson of 41, who famously referred to him, once upon a time, as “the little brown one” (his mother, Columba, is Mexican). But he’s also very much his own man, and in short order he’s made a name and a career for himself that has nothing at all to do with his presidential/gubernatorial family. Born in Houston, educated at Rice University and the UT School of Law, he clerked for U.S. district judge Sidney A. Fitzwater, in Dallas, before signing on as a corporate lawyer at Akin Gump. In February 2007 he quit to become one of four principals at N3 Capital Partners, a real estate investment partnership. Other than campaigning for his kin and raising money for Fred Thompson’s 2008 run for the White House, no politics pops up on his résumé—yet. But c’mon! You know it’s coming.
What kind of projects is N3 investing in?
The focus of our first fund is ground-up retail development. We’re targeting the emerging growth in the Hispanic population—an underserved market with a lot of opportunities—and the graying of Texas, which is increasingly becoming a retirement state. There are also opportunities when you get outside of urban cores, where there’s growth for various reasons—quality of life, safety issues, taxation. Some examples would be Weatherford or Decatur or DeSoto.
Is this what you expected to be doing at this point in your life?
Not at all. I really pictured myself as a DA.
Have you had any inclinations to get into the family business?
It’s not the time. I just got married a little more than three years ago, and I would love to have kids. For right now, I have personal goals and objectives that I want to achieve, via the Navy Reserve and community service.
Talk about the naval piece.
It’s an eight-year commitment. I worked as hard in the 2006 election cycle as I did in the 2000 and 2004 cycles, and [it was] really very disappointing for Republicans across the board. So afterward, I thought about it for a few weeks and said, “There’s got to be something outside of politics that can satisfy my desire to serve.”
People who have joined the Reserve in recent years have woken up to find themselves shipped off to dangerous places. You’re prepared to do it?
Yeah, they’re really good at admonishing you to keep in mind certain consequences of deciding to serve. Right now I still have a long way to go before I’m deployable, but that opportunity is out there. The Navy is a branch that’s really all over the world. There are other opportunities in different theaters, in the Pacific or even in Africa. There’s a significant Al Qaeda presence there.
I have to give you credit. A lot of people only talk about service.
It’s been fun. The Navy guys like to have a good time. I’ll leave it at that.
Do they razz you because your last name is Bush? Would it be different if your last name was Smith or Jones?
Actually, it’s worse with Bush. They like to bust balls. I enjoy that. I wouldn’t want it any other way. I got away with it for about half a year without them knowing.
Well, if your name is Bush, it’s one thing, but if your name is George Bush, it’s a little harder.
Yeah, I hid behind the title of Ensign Bush for a while, but unfortunately they threw in my first name on the recall roster and that was it.