Poppy's Shadow - W Wishes He'd Lost
"In an interview with the Houston Chronicle, W explained that he already was thinking about his own political future. 'I want to make it clear that I'm not running for anything right now, but if I do in the future, I'd have to work hard at establishing my own identity,' George said. Then he mentioned something that he knew sounded inappropriate as soon as he said it -- that he would have a better chance at success if his father lost the presidency. "That is a strange thing to say, isn't it?" he asked. 'But if I were to think about running for office and he was president, it would be more difficult to establish my own identity. It probably would help me out more if he lost. He'd be out of politics and be a private citizen. And, you know, people have certain expectations from the son of a president, particularly the oldest one.'" ("The Perfect Wife," page 82)
The sentiments expressed by George W. Bush to the Houston Chronicle reporter were transferred to the hotel room scene with Laura Bush for dramatic purposes.
Laura Bush later told the Austin American Statesman ("Brothers Bush: All in the Political Family," October 25, 1998) -- "In many ways, the '92 defeat, as hard as it was on George and Jebbie -- in a lot of ways it was the first time in their lives they were liberated from the shadow of their Dad. It was literally the first time they felt like they could say whatever they thought, without it reflecting on their father." ("First Son," page 317)