WHY HASN’T GEORGE W. BUSH ENDORSED ROMNEY: WATCH MSNBC NEWS CLIP WITH ALICIA MENENDEZ OF NBC LATINO

Romney’s endorsements: Where’s Bush ’43?

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MSNBC’s Thomas Roberts speaks with power political panel: Alicia Menendez of NBC Latino, New York Daily News Columnist S.E. Cupp, and USA Today politics reporter Jackie Kucinich.

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>>> one person who has been noticeably absent from the romney endorsement circuit, former president bush . a question about g.w. made for an awkward exchange with romney and the parents of the 43rd president.

>> endorsement?

>> no, no.

>> i love that picture of the two presidents, father, son. quite a legacy.

>> we want to bring in our political power panel this morning, political commentate, alista menendez and jackie kucinich. great to have you here. former president g.w. bush after after thought yesterday, also m.i.a. at half a dozen fund-raisers romney ‘s had throughout texas this week. what do you make of the fact that he’s virtually invisible now? is the silence deafening?

>> i think that the bushes are very aware of the fact that their brand at this point is still a bit complicated, that for george w. bush to come forward isn’t necessarily the boon to mitt romney that he wishes it were. the bigger endorsement is the jeb bushendorsement, big regional strength in florida even if doesn’t weigh huge in the primary it’s great in the general.

>> one endorsement the democrats are jumping all over is paul ryan . take a look. a new ad attacking romney and ryan ‘s support for one another. when old mitt claps his hands for the paul ryan plan that’s amaury*

>> when the plan came out i applauded it when paul ryan gives props to old mitt romney ‘s chops that’s amore*

>> entitlement speech was very good.

>> do you think that radio ad is going to be lightning for what’s taking place this love fest between the two, other than that a song in our head for the rest of the day.

>> no. these endorsements don’t mean anything and they especially don’t mean much when they’re delivered both rubio and ryan have given them. those are both great candidates and conservative favorites. but their endorsements were more process driven than about mitt romney . their endorsements were we need to come together, we don’t want to fight on the floor of the convention, not ringing endorsements for mitt romney . i think both of those guys kind of wanted to just get them out of the way.

>> all right. jackie , despite romney ‘s lead in wisconsin there’s a new nbc/marist poll showing him trailing president obama by double digits . the president has 52% support versus romney ‘s 35 and trailing the president in several other battleground polls. do you expect numbers to tighten up as romney begins to wrap up the nomination?

>> i think as we see the campaign go on, they might tighten up a bit. but romney is suffering from is not being able to really gin up a lot of enthusiasm with some of the under pent voters and that’s — he hasn’t been able to pay a lot of attention to them because of the conservative nature of the this race. it will tighten up a about they have find a way to generate enthusiasm to voters on the fence.

>> as we talk about rick santorum , if he does poorly in wisconsin and numbers are fading in pennsylvania what does it mean for his campaign?

>> interesting aspect of that poll that we saw of the nbc/marist poll santorum fares better against obama than romney does. there’s still support out there. he doesn’t have much reason to get out of the race before pennsylvania. so i would imagine he’ll probably stick around.

>> doesn’t rick santorum support president obama more than he supports romney ?

>> santorum?

>> yeah. isn’t he the one that said if i’m not the one, don’t vote for romney , vote forpresident obama .

>> he was trying to say mitt romney and obama have more in common than people think.

>> let’s talk about newt gingrich . sheldon adelson , the billionaire benny factor single-handedly penning checks to the campaign met with romney ‘s backers according to “the washington post .” ed ale donson and his family spent $16 million, that’s a drop in the bucket, a heavy night on the town for that family. jackie , what more does newt gingrich need to do to get the message that this isn’t going his way and he needs to hang it up?

>> i don’t think anyone can make newt get out other than newt. he’s going to stick around. at this point he’s not making a big impact in polls anymore. the frank lynn marginal poll had him at single digits. he can stick around as long as he wants to. he wants to be part of the conversation and whether or not anyone’s paying attention.

>> as we speak of wealthy donors the word that the company at the center of the pink slime controversy involving ammonia-tainted beef by-products headed by a majorromney donor, es this easy pickings for democrats to make a pink slime ad?

>> sure. democrats are focused on the ryan contrast piece. i think that will play much bigger and better with voters than this temporary question of pink slime connecting it to medicare, medicaid, big tax cuts for billionaires and millionaires. that’s what’s going to resonate with voters, not this meat thing.

>> i think alicia’s right. i don’t think the pick slink distraction will have too many legs.

>> ladies, thanks so much. appreciate it.

IS ROMNEY FOR SB1070?

THE HISPANIC BLOG IS THE LATEST HISPANIC NEWS BY JESSICA MARIE GUTIERREZ

For Romney, ‘model’ policy on migration isn’t SB 1070

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State Rep. J. M. Lozano said Monday he will switch parties and become a Republican, making him the second South Texas lawmaker to abandon the Democratic Party in what has traditionally been a blue corner of the state.

In a phone interview, Lozano said he plans to formally announce his decision Thursday in Austin and in his home district, which includes Kingsville and stretches along the Gulf Cost to the Rio Grande Valley, near the border with Mexico.

The move further pads the GOP House supermajority, giving the Republicans 102 of 150 seats. But the Legislature is not set to meet again until next year, meaning his switch will matter only if Gov. Rick Perry calls a special session – something Perry says he has no plans to do.

Elected in 2010, Lozano filed for re-election as a Democrat on Nov. 30, just three days after the filing period opened. A second filing period has begun, however, after a legal battle over the Texas redistricting maps delayed the state’s primary until May 29.

Lozano’s district was altered significantly by maps drawn by the Republican-dominated Legislature, but those maps may change again based on the forthcoming decision of a federal court in Washington. The Texas Democratic Party says no other Democrat has filed to challenge Lozano.

Lozano said his decision had less to do with redistricting and more to do with his support of oil and natural gas exploration, his opposition to abortion and other conservative convictions popular with his constituents.

“My job now is to let the Hispanic community know that our values are welcome in the Republican Party,” he said.

Lozano becomes the third Democratic state representative to change parties in less than 18 months. In December 2010, Rep. Allan Ritter of Nederland, east of Houston, became a Republican, as did Rep. Aaron Pena, who represents the Rio Grande Valley community of Edinburg.

Pena has since announced he’s not planning to seek re-election this year, however, after he said the redrawn voting maps made it impossible for a Republican to win in his district.

South Texas has traditionally been a Democratic stronghold, but Lozano said the state party leadership ignored the issues most important to him. The owner of a trio of chicken wing franchises, Lozano was born in Mexico and became a U.S. citizen at 6.

He said he was persuaded to change parities after a conversation this week with George P. Bush, the founder of the Hispanic Republicans of Texas political action committee. He is also the son of former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and nephew of former President George W. Bush.

“We talked about everything, our lives and how there’s this misconception out there that the Republican Party is not welcome to Hispanics,” Lozano said.

The Texas Democratic Party called Lozano’s decision “unprincipled and cowardly.”

“Just 15 months ago, Lozano was elected to office as a Democrat. The instant things got tough, Lozano jumped ship and joined a party that has betrayed his constituents,” Chairman Boyd Richie said in a statement. “He’s proven he has no core and stands for nothing but his quest to grab and hold power.”

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WHO ARE “THE LITTLE BROWN ONES” IN UNISON WITH THE GOP?

THE HISPANIC BLOG IS THE LATEST HISPANIC NEWS BY JESSICA MARIE GUTIERREZ

"More than five years later, Bush, who along with two siblings was dubbed one of “the little brown ones” by his grandfather, former President George H.W. Bush, is in Austin discussing how the 18-month-old Hispanic Republicans of Texas Political Action Committee, which he co-founded, moves ahead after redistricting."

 photo by: Bob Daemmrich George P. Bush, founding board member of the Hispanic Republicans of Texas, pauses at the Austin Club on March 1st, 2012

The seeds of political ascension for a member of the Bush family may have been planted in an Austin eatery whose name conjures up images of Janis Joplin jam sessions.

After Election Day in 2006, George P. Bush — the son of former Gov. Jeb Bush of Florida and the nephew of former President George W. Bush — met with a friend at Threadgill’s to discuss how to propel more Hispanics within the ranks of the Republican Party.

More than five years later, Bush, who along with two siblings was dubbed one of “the little brown ones” by his grandfather, former President George H.W. Bush, is in Austin discussing how the 18-month-old Hispanic Republicans of Texas Political Action Committeewhich he co-founded, moves ahead after redistricting.

“There really wasn’t an entity that was focused on the campaign finance element of Hispanic outreach, nor was there really an entity that was doing the blocking and tackling and mechanics of educating Latinos to actually run for office,” Bush, a 35-year-old lawyer, said of the PAC’s genesis.

Its board includes lawyers, former aides to government officials, advertising executives and a professor, who are working to reach a traditionally blue-collar demographic. Bush said that is part of the message.

“They represent the American dream and are less than a generation from very humble origins,” Bush said of the board members, who have endorsed candidates from myriad backgrounds.

“This organization is also meant to be aspirational, and I think the Hispanic community is aspirational,” said Bush, whose mother is from Mexico.

Democrats say the PAC faces an uphill battle.

“They are delusional if they think they’re making any inroads with Latinos,” said Rebecca Acuña, a Texas Democratic Party spokeswoman. “In Texas, there are 668 Democratic Hispanic elected officials to the 60 in the Republican Party.”

Though Bush is careful when speaking about his own goals, he says he is inextricably linked to politics. For now, however, he is content with his role with the PAC.

His future political success could hinge on how Republicans move forward on specific issues. He supports portions of the DREAM Act, and said he thinks most Republicans would also favor at least certain aspects of it, including a pathway toward legalization for illegal immigrants if they serve in the military.

He also calls himself a “George W. Bush” Republican on other aspects of immigration reform.

“That is essentially securing the border, placing an importance on that,” he said. “In terms of folks already here? Figure out a way where they can be taken out of the shadows and contribute to society and provide an opportunity to contribute and pay their fair share.”

Like his uncle, he also supports the U.S. government’s efforts to aid Mexico in that country’s battles against organized crime.

“My opinion is that we both have a vested national security interest and increasingly [the cartel wars] are infringing upon our national security,” he said. “Therefore, collaboration at the highest level is called for and that means continued collaboration on intelligence and information-sharing.”

It was under President George W. Bush that the U.S. and Mexico signed the Mérida Initiative, an aid package of about $1.5 billion that provides equipment, technology and training to Mexico.

George P. Bush said he wishes he spoke more Spanish, his first language, but it has faded from his life due to a lack of practice. He advocates that Hispanics in America should learn English.

“Whether we like it or not, it is the language of commerce in our country,” he said. “That is not meant to be in a dispirited tone.”

Bush knows speculation about his future will persist. In some circles he has already been dubbed “47.” The talk is flattering, he said.

“I’d love to keep the door open. Politics is in my blood,” he said.

Read More: http://www.texastribune.org/texas-politics/2012-elections/george-p-aims-take-hispanics-higher-gop/

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WHO WAS THE FIRST CUBAN-AMERICAN CONFIRMED FOR APPEALS BENCH?

THE HISPANIC BLOG BY JESSICA MARIE GUTIERREZ

First Cuban-American Confirmed for Appeals Bench

Paul’s objection triggered a procedure that delayed a final vote for 30 hours — until Wednesday.

As Milbank writes, the GOP just can’t seem to help itself when showing disrespect to the Latino electorate:

The party’s presidential candidates have done long-term damage by vowing opposition to the DREAM Act (legalization for illegal immigrants who serve in the armed forces) and by trying to paint each other as too soft on immigration (highlighted by Herman Cain’s call for a lethal electric fence). Rubio and Jeb Bush have called for an end to what Rubio called“harsh and intolerable” rhetoric.

The Hispanic population is expected to double — to 30 percent of the United States population — in the coming decades. So if Latinos continue to vote 2-to-1 for Democrats, the Republican Party will become irrelevant. Zoltan Hajnal of the University of California, San Diego, an authority on racial politics, sees a parallel with the Republicans’ alienation of African Americans in the 1960s. “The image of the party is pretty clear to most Latinos,” he said, “and once party images are built, they get passed on from parent to child in a process that’s very resistant to change.”

The party simply can’t afford self-inflicted wounds such as the Jordan debacle. “He’s an integral part of our community,” Rubio told his colleagues.

The five senators opposing Jordan’s confirmation in Wednesday’s vote? David Vitter, Roy Blunt, Pat Toomey, Lee and Paul.

Read More: http://fcir.org/2012/02/16/first-cuban-american-confirmed-for-appeals-bench/

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