Former Republican President George H.W. Bush is breaking rank by casting his vote for Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton. At least, that's what Kathleen Kennedy Townsend - niece of JFK - claimed on Facebook this week after meeting with the former commander-in-chief.
But Bush 41 spokesman Jim McGrath said that the former president would not be officially endorsing any candidates or revealing his voting preference. "The vote President Bush will cast as a private citizen in some 50 days will be just that: a private vote cast in some 50 days," McGrath told CNN. "He is not commenting on the presidential race in the interim."
In other words, Bush's people aren't confirming or denying the rumor. If true, the unofficial endorsement would be a bizarre turn of events considering that Hillary's husband - former President Bill Clinton - beat the incumbent Bush when he ran for re-election in 1992.
But these wouldn't be the oddest bedfellows in political history. Here are some other unexpected supporters.
1. The Republican Ramone
Punk music is synonymous with anti-establishment sentiments, right? Not according to the late Johnny Ramone, former guitarist of the iconic punk rockers The Ramones.
"To me, I think punk is right wing," Johnny said during a 2003 interview. "[W]hen you think of who punks are, they’re greasers, people who didn’t fit in, but they didn’t back down either. Who above all, love
He also named his top two favorite commanders-in-chief. "I think that Reagan was the best President in my life. A real Republican. And Nixon is number two."
2. Eric Clapton Wanted To Make Britain Great Again
Before Donald Trump began spouting vitriol against illegal Mexican immigrants and American Muslims, the most incendiary critic of immigration in the western world was British politician Enoch Powell, whose infamous "Rivers of Blood" speech from 1968 offered an apocalyptic view of the future in which “the black man will have the whip hand over the white man.” He added that seeing Britain allow immigrants “is like watching a nation busily engaged in heaping up its own funeral pyre.”
The only thing scarier than his racist rhetoric was the fact that he gained influential supporters - including legendary rocker Eric Clapton.
“All the fucking foreigners and wogs over here are like, just disgusting," Clapton said during a drunken rant at a 1976 concert in Birmingham. "I think Enoch’s right, I think we should send them all back. Get the foreigners out. Get the wogs out. Get the coons out. Keep Britain white.”
Clapton's comments were particularly surprising since he rose to fame covering songs by black musicians including Chuck Berry, Howlin' Wolf and Elmore James.
3. The Nazi King?
Historians aren't sure if British King Edward VIII was an admirer of Adolf Hitler or an aspiring Nazi corroborator. But Albert Speer - one of the Führer's ministers - had no doubt that World War II would have ended differently had Edward not abdicated the British throne.
According to Speer's memoir Inside the Third Reich, Hitler believed that Nazi Germany would have formed an alliance with the United Kingdom if only Edward had remained king. "I am certain through him permanent friendly relations could have been achieved," Hitler once said according to Speer. "If he had stayed, everything would have been different. His abdication was a severe loss for us."
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