Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush (R) spent an absurd amount of money per delegate: nearly $50 million.
That is not a typo.
The Washington Post's Dave Weigel came to the conclusion after Bush received votes from three delegates on Tuesday at the Republican National Convention. Weigel found that for each delegate, Bush's campaign and his Super PACs spent an estimated $46 million.
No wonder his donors were unhappy back in January, as they felt that Bush was "burning money." After all that $130 million was spent, Bush only had three delegates to show for it at the end of the day.
This suggests that the splurging of money in politics is really not as valuable as the absurd amount of free media real estate mogul Donald Trump received throughout the primary, which was ultimately one of the most significant factors in clinching the Republican nomination for president.
But without Bush, Trump would not be the nominee. As The Daily Wire editor-in-chief Ben Shapiro has written:
Travel back to the time of the Jeb! campaign announcement. He announced on June 15, in a widely-praised spectacle at Miami-Dade College. The establishment was over the moon: they’d found their man, a new scion of the Bush family to carry forward the banner. The grassroots was devastated: the Bush family, to the grassroots, represented yet another royal, insider attempt to quash the base’s desire for more conservative candidates with blue collar appeal.
The very next day, Donald Trump announced his candidacy.
And he did so by slapping at Bush directly, multiple times. Everybody focused in on his infamous rip on Mexican illegal immigrants, but just as important to the base was Trump’s precision attack in Jeb’s candidacy. He attacked Bush for his failure to properly answer questions about the Iraq War: “I mean, you looked at Bush, it took him five days to answer the question on Iraq.” And Common Core: “Bush is totally in favor of Common Core. I don’t see how he can possibly get the nomination.” And immigration: “He’s weak on immigration.” Trump summed up: “How the hell can you vote for this guy? You just can’t do it.”
Trump constantly attacked Bush throughout the campaign and brutally savaged Bush like a rag doll during the debates. Bush would attempt to make feeble comebacks against Trump, but ultimately he lived up to the "low-energy" moniker Trump gave him and was never truly able to gain serious traction in the primary.
In other words, Bush spent $130 million for three delegates and for Trump to take over the Republican Party. As Shapiro wrote: "Thanks for nothing, Jeb!"