DERRY, N.H. — Jeb Bush’s standard stump speech seemed to take on new meaning Thursday when his mother, former First Lady Barbara Bush, joined him on the campaign trail for the first time since he announced his White House bid last summer.
Barbara Bush sat directly behind her son, alternating between applause and intent listening as he delivered his standard campaign speech that caused him to choke up at least three times.
“I didn’t really plan on this,” Barbara Bush said about being on the trail. “But Jeb is the nicest, wisest, most caring, loyal, disciplined…He’s everything we need in a president.”
“I apologize mom,” Jeb Bush said while looking over his shoulder. “I called Donald Trump a jerk when he disparaged people with disabilities, it’s just not right.”
The former Florida governor has started to rely on his family more in recent weeks than ever before - defying any fear of dynasty labels – even starting one town hall Thursday by saying “I’m proud to be a Bush.”
“I cannot tell you in the 90 versions of town hall meetings I’ve done all across this state how many times people came up and said ‘our mother - I love your mother, I love your mother,’ just over and over again,” he said.
This article originally appeared on NBCNews.com.