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US presidential candidate Jeb Bush apologizes to France

The beleaguered candidate has apologized for a remark he made during last week's Republican debate poking fun at the French. His comment drew criticism from the French Ambassador.

Bush said he did a disservice by suggesting during last week's Rupublican presidential debate that the Senate operates "on a French work week."

While travelling through New Hampshire as part of his campaign tour this week, Bush told reporters he regretted the comment.

"I now know that the average French workweek is actually greater than the German workweek," he said, according to "Time" magazine. "So, my God, I totally insulted an entire country - our first ally - that helped us become free as a nation! And I apologize."

The French react

Bush's comment was directed at rival Marco Rubio, a senator from Florida, for his lackluster voting record on Capitol Hill. But it quickly drew the most reaction from France, including the country's top envoy to the US.

After the debate, Ambassador to the US Gerard Araud took to Twitter to set the record straight.

Bush's campaign spokesman said his "inbox was full of French journalists" after the comment was made, "Time" magazine reported.

To show that no harm was done, however, Araud tweeted out the following on Wednesday:

Bush, once seen as the natural frontrunner for the Republican presidential nomination, has seen his popularity take a nosedive in recent months. On Monday he set off for New Hampshire as part of his new "Jeb Can Fix It" tour.

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