When Jeb Bush first ran for governor of Florida in 1994, his father had recently been booted out of the White House and the fortysomething son very much wanted to be seen as his own man. So, when it came time to design his bumper stickers, he went with a red background and “Jeb!” in chunky white letters.

There was no mention of his famous surname or his party, and the jolting exclamation point was the opposite of his family’s Kennebunkport reserve. Bush ended up losing that race but keeping the brand, reusing the logo in his 1998 political comeback and in his 2002 gubernatorial re-election campaign.

Now “Jeb!” is back. Bush revealed Sunday on Twitter that he’s reviving his old-school, Seinfeld-era insignia to be the symbol of his bid for the Republican presidential nomination, which he will announce Monday in Miami. This time, only the colors have been flipped: ruby characters over white, underlined by “2016” in navy blue.

The choice was perhaps a natural one for Bush, 62, recalling his early tenure in Tallahassee, long before the rise of the tea party, when he was the definition of a national conservative star and his family was as popular as ever with Republican voters.

But it also showed that as far as Bush has come – and with all the millions he has raised – he is still struggling to address the same issues that he encountered two decades ago – an electorate with pockets of Bush fatigue and a cerebral persona that at times bores activists and could benefit from a kick of energy.

The connotations of “Jeb!” over the years are also a useful window into Bush’s political evolution. Each time he has reframed it, always reluctant to run as a Bush.

Early on, the jagged letters and exclamation point were a nod toward what Bush described in 1994 as his “head-banging” conservatism. Proudly ideological, he distanced himself from the manor-born pragmatism of his father, George H.W. Bush. (Jeb’s name comes from the initials for his given name, John Ellis Bush.)

Following his defeat, Bush traveled across the state, rebuilding his relationships and smoothing out his edges. Rather than running as a hardliner in 1998, he cast himself as a levelheaded reformer and “Jeb!” alluded to the grass-roots movement he built during his political winter. In 2002, “Jeb!” signaled a celebration – a re-election never in doubt and momentum for a possible national campaign in the years to come.

Longtime Bush ally Mike Murphy, who has worked with him since 1998 and currently is managing the Bush-allied super PAC, wrote Sunday on Twitter that dusting off the calling card provided Bush with a “clean, easy to see from far away, upbeat, and most of all, consistent” emblem. Other Bush backers described it as a nostalgic shibboleth and a reminder of what they see as his lack of airs – just Jeb.

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