Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush said in an interview broadcast Sunday that fellow Republican presidential candidate Donald TrumpDonald TrumpCohn: People 'wasting time' calling for Trump's tax returns Overnight Energy: Trump set to sign offshore drilling order Bush ethics lawyer: Trump should strip Flynn of military title MORE’s popularity can be attributed to Americans’ anxiety, adding that the GOP front-runner does not “have the skills to bring people together.”
Bush said, however, that Trump is not offering anything “to lift people up.”
“I think the cumulative effect of pointing that out-- respectfully, look-- the guy's entertaining, for sure. But his ideas aren't gonna help people. And he doesn't have the skills to bring people together.”
Bush also noted that the GOP front-runner has “no proven leadership skills in the public domain.”
“So my path is to say I do,” he said. “I've got a proven record. I don't run away from the fire. I don't blame other people. I don't disparage people. I try to unite around a common purpose. I got to do that as governor. And the ideas that I'm laying out would help America. And that's-- that's my path.”
Bush also dodged a question about whether he’d support Trump if the billionaire wins the Republican nomination.
“I'm gonna win this nomination,” he said. “That's my focus. That's what I'm trying to do. But anybody'd be better than Hillary Clinton or Bernie Sanders.”
“You’re in on Trump, if it’s him?” host Chuck Todd pressed.
“He's not gonna win the nomination,” Bush responded. “And I am … I'm gonna continue to be critical of him when he doesn't advocate conservative principles. He's running for the conservative party's nomination. He should be a conservative, and he hasn't shown it.”
Trump currently leads the crowded GOP presidential field with 34.5 percent support, according to a RealClearPolitics average of national polls, compared to Bush’s 4.8 percent.