Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Jeb Bush: I was proud to introduce President Barack Obama in Miami

President Barack Obama and Jeb Bush, right, have found common ground on education issues.

Associated Press

President Barack Obama and Jeb Bush, right, have found common ground on education issues.

ORLANDO — Hispanic leaders gathered at a national conference in Orlando may have given Mitt Romney a lukewarm reception Thursday, but they rose to their feet and cheered former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush.

Bush, addressing the group in both in English and Spanish, struck a decidedly nonpartisan tone as he spoke passionately about the importance of reforming the education system through higher standards, more accountability and school choice.

"This is the great civil right, and you as leaders in your communities need to take a stand and to be strongly supportive of education reform, to move to a child-centered system where children truly have a greater chance of gaining the power of knowledge,'' Bush told members of the National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials.

"I hope that you're engaged in this movement," he said. "Whether you're on the school board, a teacher, whether you're a county commissioner, it doesn't matter. This should be the highest priority for mayors, this should be the highest priority for business leaders. This should be (how) America defines itself going forward. And if we get this right, our diversity becomes a strength, our country will prosper, our country will continue to be the greatest on the face of the Earth."

Education reform is one area where Bush often agrees with the Obama administration, and the Republican former governor said he was proud to introduce President Barack Obama last year at a Miami high school.

"I don't know about you, but when we find common ground we shouldn't fight anymore. We should move on and build on that success,'' Bush said. "Apparently one can get in trouble when they say these kinds of things, but I happen to believe it's the American way. There's enough to fight about."

Speaking later to reporters, Bush was considerably less charitable about the president's move last week to halt some deportations.

"It was a purely political move to pre-empt, and that's exactly what the motive was," Bush said. "He's had supermajorities in the House and Senate to fulfill his promise he made in the last campaign, and what we've heard are crickets. I mean, not a single move. And then to do this was a good political move. Bad policy in the sense that it's a stopgap — it creates continued uncertainty for a whole lot of people who don't deserve it."

The popular former governor has criticized some fellow Republicans for harsh rhetoric on immigration, but Thursday he praised Romney's speech before NALEO.

"I heard a consistent message of border control, but I think he expanded it out to talk about reforming the immigration system itself, allowing people to serve in the military to be able to get legal residency; to work with Democrats — which is a new concept — where actually Republicans and Democrats can work together for long-term, comprehensive reform rather than stopgap measures," Bush said.

Jeb Bush: I was proud to introduce President Barack Obama in Miami 06/21/12 [Last modified: Thursday, June 21, 2012 10:04pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. White House signals acceptance of Russia sanctions bill

    National

    WASHINGTON — The White House indicated Sunday that President Donald Trump would accept new legislation imposing sanctions on Russia and curtailing his authority to lift them on his own, a striking turnaround after a broad revolt in Congress by lawmakers of both parties who distrusted his friendly approach to …

    President Donald Trump’s ability to lift sanctions against Russia would be blocked.
  2. Senator: American student arrested in China has been freed

    World

    BILLINGS, Mont. — Chinese authorities have dropped charges against an American college student who was arrested and detained in the a week ago after reportedly injuring a taxi driver who was roughing up his mother in a fare dispute, a U.S. lawmaker said Sunday.

    Guthrie McLean was detained for reportedly injuring a taxi driver after the driver physically attacked McLean’s mother.
  3. Tampa-based makeup artist disqualified from contest over pro-Trump post

    News

    WICHITA, Kan. — A makeup artist who splits her time between Tampa and Kansas says she won a national contest sponsored by Kat Von D Beauty but was later disqualified because of an Instagram post supporting Donald Trump's presidential candidacy.

    Gypsy Freeman won the contest with this image posted to Instagram. [@facesofgypsy on Instagram]
  4. Flesh-eating bacteria nearly kills Florida man who thought he just had blisters from a hike

    Health

    Wayne Atkins thought little of the blisters he had gotten while hiking. He was trekking up and down the 4,500-foot-high Mount Garfield in New Hampshire - a 10-mile round trip - and blisters were no surprise.

    Wayne Atkins thought his blisters were from hiking, but the flesh eating bacteria nearly killed him. [YouTube]
  5. Yes, again: Rays blow late two-run lead, get swept by Rangers (w/video)

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — As weekends go, this was a bad one for the Rays. In a word: brutal.

    Tampa Bay Rays relief pitcher Brad Boxberger, foreground, reacts after giving up a home run to Texas Rangers' Carlos Gomez during the eighth inning of a baseball game Sunday, July 23, 2017, in St. Petersburg, Fla. (AP Photo/Mike Carlson) FLMC116