Former Florida governor and current Republican presidential candidate Jeb Bush said that he believes the Washington Redskins should change their name to the Northern Virginia Redskins during a town hall meeting in New Hampshire on Wednesday, The Washington Post reports.
“Someone sent me an e-mail and said ‘Jeb, the term Redskins isn’t the pejorative; it’s Washington that’s the pejorative,’” Bush said. “If they’re going to change their name, I don’t know what you’d call it, Northern Virginia Redskins or something like that.”
FedEx Field, where the team has played since 1997, is located in Maryland.
In late September, Bush told XM Sirius Radio that he did not find the Redskins’ name offensive.
“I don’t think [the team] should change it. But again, I don’t think politicians ought to have any say in that to be honest with you. I don’t find it offensive,” Bush told ABC News’ Rick Klein and ESPN's Andy Katz. “Native American tribes generally don’t find it offensive.”
Bush was governor when Florida State and the Seminole tribe were under fire for the university’s use of team’s mascot.
“I think they insult those people by telling them, ‘No, no, you're not smart enough to understand this. You should be feeling really horrible about this.’ It's ridiculous,” Bush told USA Today in 2005.
A 2014 poll by The Change the Mascot campaign determined that 83 percent of Americans would not use the term “redskin” to a Native American’s face.
- Christopher Chavez