The Corner

Jeb Bush vs. Fauxcahontas

From this morning’s New York Times:

There is little doubt that Jeb Bush possesses strong credentials for appealing to Hispanic voters.

He speaks fluent Spanish. His wife, Columba Bush, was born in Mexico. For two years in his 20s, he lived in Venezuela, immersing himself in the country’s culture.

Mr. Bush, a former Florida governor and likely presidential candidate, was born in Texas and hails from one of America’s most prominent political dynasties. But on at least one occasion, it appears he got carried away with his appeal to Spanish-speaking voters and claimed he actually was Hispanic.

In a 2009 voter-registration application, obtained from the Miami-Dade County Elections Department, Mr. Bush marked Hispanic in the field labeled “race/ethnicity.”

It’s not clear what the Times intends by suggesting that Bush “got carried away,” but it is clear that identifying himself as Hispanic on a private legal form offered Bush no political benefit. Is there any evidence to suggest that what happened was anything other than what Bush wrote this morning, responding to a teasing Twitter message from his son?

So, in sum: Senator Dances-with-Diplomas peddled a false story about her heritage to help promote her academic and political career. Jeb Bush checked the wrong box. You’d need peyote to think the two episodes were comparable.

Ian Tuttle — Ian Tuttle is the former Thomas L. Rhodes Journalism Fellow at the National Review Institute.

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