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Jane Swift will help Jeb Bush in Iowa

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Former acting governor Jane Swift in 2002.
Former acting governor Jane Swift in 2002.(Maeda, Wendy Globe Staff)

Former acting governor Jane Swift, concerned with the direction her Republican Party is heading, will travel to Iowa later this week to campaign for Jeb Bush.

Swift said she hoped Bush, whom she came to know when they were both governors and later through education policy work, could score a respectable third- or fourth-place finish in the Feb. 1 Iowa caucuses. Bush has consistently polled a distant fifth there.

"Iowa is all about – and all of these early primaries are about – exceeding expectations," Swift said. "The good news for Jeb is that I think all of his expectations have been set pretty low."

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Swift said she plans to leave Friday for Des Moines, on the heels of door-knocking in New Hampshire that led to her crashing a Patriots-watching party on Sunday in Windham. She said she has been trained in the art of the caucus and will work as a Bush surrogate.

"Clearly, the race is in an interesting place at the moment, and so folks like me need to get off their couch and do some work," she said.

Noting that Northeast Republicans tend to lean more toward moderation than those in the rest of the country, she said that neither Donald Trump nor US Senator Ted Cruz, who are first and second in the polls, is "the flavor of Republican that appeals to me."

"I think they would both have a very hard time winning the general election," she said.


Jim O'Sullivan can be reached at jim.osullivan@globe.com. Follow him on Twitter at @JOSreports.