Jeb Bush Talks Up Immigration, “Non-Traditional” Families At Conservative Confab

Bush turned a lot of heads Friday when he said immigrants in the United States are “more fertile,” but the real shockwaves are being felt in the conservative movement after Bush delivered a defense of immigration reform and of accepting “non-traditional” families

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Mary F. Clavert / Reuters

Former Florida Governor Jeb Bush speaks during the Faith and Freedom Coalition Road to Majority Conference at the J.W. Marriott Hotel in Washington, June 14, 2013.

Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush turned a lot of heads Friday when he said immigrants in the United States are “more fertile,” but the real shockwaves are being felt in the conservative movement after Bush delivered a defense of immigration reform and of accepting  “non-traditional” families at the conservative Faith and Freedom Coalition conference.

Bush, regularly mentioned as a potential 2016 Republican candidate for president, upset the delicate balance at the conference—a key stop for any potential candidate to tap into the Republican Party’s social conservative base—where speakers like Sen. Marco Rubio and Rep. Paul Ryan carefully toed the line to avoid upsetting their hosts. Bush went the opposite direction, encouraging conservatives to embrace immigration reform and the modern definition of families.

“Demography is destiny,” Bush said in his address to the “Road to Majority” conference, bemoaning declining birth rates in the United States and talking about the economic benefit of immigration reform.

“We’re going to have fewer workers taking care of a larger number of people than the country has a social contract with, to be able to allow them to retire with dignity and purpose,” Bush said. “We cannot do that with the fertility rates that we have in our country.”

“Immigrants are more fertile and they love families and they have more intact families and they bring a younger population,” he continued, calling for a more economically focused immigration policy and saying immigrants create an “engine of economic prosperity.”

(While Twitter was aflame over Bush’s word choice, Bush has long been a supporter of immigration reform and has built the case around immigrant fertility rates before.)

Conservatives have been the last to grab onto the bipartisan immigration reform effort, with many either opposing the effort or trying to toughen the bill. The Faith and Freedom Coalition, founded by evangelical leader Ralph Reed, is opposed to a path to citizenship for those who crossed the border illegally and is calling for tougher standards on border security. Rubio, one of the “Gang of Eight” authors of the senate’s bipartisan immigration bill and the subject of conservative pressure to toughen or even abandon the legislation, barely mentioned it in his speech to the group on Thursday.

Unlike Rubio’s remarks, Bush’s weren’t’ punctuated by cries of “Amen” or rapturous applause, especially his comments about reevaluating the conservative definition of ‘family.’

“Let me remind you, families don’t look all the time like they used to, and that’s okay,” Bush said. “We have to be supportive of a single mom or dad, or the grandmother taking care of young children, the non-traditional family as we are of any idealized families of our youth.”

Bush, who said in March that he believes gay marriage should be a state issue, said that society shouldn’t focus on the makeup of families, but on the outcome for their children.

“Things are not as black and white as they used to be — there’s a lot more gray now,” he told the social conservative group. No one applauded.

In an interview with ABC News airing Sunday, Bush did not offer any hints as to whether he will seek the White House inhabited by both his brother and father.

“I think we’ve got a split ballot amongst the Bush senior family. Pretty sure that’s the case,” he joked.

 

41 comments
RonSmith
RonSmith

It is hard to believe yet now obvious that George was the smartest of the brothers.

RonSmith
RonSmith

Jeb should watch Idiocracy the movie.  It is not the fertility that leads the stupid and the immoral to breed many children which they cannot afford to raise properly.  It is simply the common sense of the common man that causes them to take steps to curb their own breeding - that is hardly infertility.

SarahConfran
SarahConfran

Jeb is def. running in 2016. If at a conference called "Faith and freedom" he didnt express far right wing ideals then he is definitely trying to show he is a more moderate republican and has a shot of winning an election.

UnitedNations
UnitedNations

UN: Human beings do Not need your noisy mosques but the peaceful lives. 

www.kompas.com

Telkomin
Telkomin

Mohammad SAW: 

Allah does Not need your noisy islam but your peace. 

Earth does Not need your noisy mosques but the peaceful earth.

buffalo.barnes102
buffalo.barnes102

More lip service from another GOP blow-hard. Nothing to see here, folks. Move along!

BeAmerican
BeAmerican

Arabian Immigrants: 

We want to live in America with American cultures and abandon our islamic cultures. 

We can live anywhere without islam but islam cannot exist wihout us. 

So We are Ready & Proud to be American.

ArabSorry
ArabSorry

Arabs Apologize:

All muslims want to cheap sell our noisy mosques for food & housing for our innocent kids.

Can we trade our rocky mosques for food?

MediaWar
MediaWar

From: aduankonten@depkominfo.go.id

To: jakconsul@state.gov USA

Indonesia: Do noisy mosques pay taxes in your country?

USA: They have to.

See TVone, redaksi@bisnis.co.id. 

Lakjack21
Lakjack21

Begs the question:  If immigrants really do create an “engine of economic prosperity", then why is Mexico such a screwed up country?  The great majority of the people that will be affected by immigration reform are the illegals from Mexico.  And Mexico is a country that was created and built by that "Hispanic Culture" that they're always so proud of.  Yet they're having to sneak into the US to pick peaches.

FrancisMulhare
FrancisMulhare

i will make a prediction right now. If Jeb Bush can get past the primary process and secure the nomination he will give Hillary some serious competition.

Hermione
Hermione

I'll give Jeb Bush credit for at least speaking his mind.  Now, whether I am going to buy into what he is selling is a whole different matter, and right now, I don't have my wallet open.

ARTRaveler
ARTRaveler

The Republicans can worry about single parent families but they need to recognize that their former president created a number of single parent families by his wars.  And the Ozzie and Hariet world only existed on TV (and in the deep recesses of TP minds).  You can't have a party supporting out-sourcing of higher-paying manufacturing  jobs overseas and then wonder why both parents have to work at the lower service industry pay to survive.. 

Bilosopher
Bilosopher

Pragmatism has no place in radical religion. It's all based on woo-woo.

Hollywooddeed
Hollywooddeed

He's got the Bush countenance, the Bush name and the Bush intellect.  No, thank you.  Enough.  Go away.

BobSheepleherder
BobSheepleherder

There's nothing wrong with immigration reform, amnesty is NOT immigration reform.

MrObvious
MrObvious

Wishful thinking; you might want them to think you're buddies, but then you better stop treating everyone except white male and rich like dogpooee.

joelp77440
joelp77440

He's doomed.  He night have gotten away with that speech during his father's term or early in his brother's term, but the Republican party is no longer the Republican party.  It is the ultraconserative party. 

jdyer2
jdyer2

This man's thoughts are dangerous.  First off, we can't continue to have the ponzi scheme where each generation has to be larger than the previous one to take care of them and pay on going SS wages.  Where does it end?  We have to bite the bullet and stabilize at some point.  Does anyone really think this country will generate 'economic prosperity' by growing another 100 or 200 million people?  

jmac
jmac

"Things are not as black and white as they used to be."  !!!  Things were never black and white.  Fox likes the black and white; evil or good.  There's two side to every story.  Nuance even.  Imagine.   

As to fertile, he's either going to have to make men start having babies or come up with some other way because even Hispanic women aren't going to keep pushing out the babies once they're educated, in jobs, and figuring out that a hysterectomy is an acceptable form of birth control to the Catholic church.  

Paul,nnto
Paul,nnto

I think the country has had its fill of presidents named Bush. 

TyPollard
TyPollard

“We have to be supportive of a single mom or dad, or the grandmother taking care of young children, the non-traditional family as we are of any idealized families of our youth.”

Republicans are also no longer the Republicans of Bush's youth. He has more in common politically with Centrist Democrats than the current freak show that is the Republican Party. 


If you look at the responses to his speech you will see that this is true.

Guiltyislam
Guiltyislam

@BeAmerican 

UN: 

Loud islam seek enemies only Not friend. 

See in indonesia like a battle field at the cursed arabian regions.

Telkomin
Telkomin

@ArabSorry 

Mohammad SAW: 

Allah does Not need your noisy islam but your peace. 

Earth does Not need your noisy mosques but the peaceful earth.

Telkomin
Telkomin

@MediaWar 

Mohammad SAW: 

Allah does Not need your noisy islam but your peace. 

Earth does Not need your noisy mosques but the peaceful earth.

Guiltyislam
Guiltyislam

@MediaWar

Indonesia: 

All muslims must pay more taxes for the pollutions the loud negative sounds from all noisy mosques or back to their hell arabian deserts.

MediaWar
MediaWar

@Lakjack21

From: aduankonten@depkominfo.go.id  

Indonesia: Do noisy mosques pay taxes in your country?

Alejandro
Alejandro

@Lakjack21

 I wouldn't say Mexico is such a screwed up country. I'd say Mexico has their own problems, like every other country does, including this one. I think the idea many have of Mexico is mostly negative, but in reality its a beautiful country with its unique culture and many great people. The majority of us don't know much about these great people or culture because we usually only pay attention to the bad news.

If the people sneaking in to this country to pick peaches, could do just that in Mexico, and make the same amount of money, I doubt they would be risking their lives to get across the border and leave everything they know and love behind. So I guess its possible to argue that maybe Mexico has unemployment problems and the education system isn't all that great throughout the country. I haven't done research so I wouldn't know.  But maybe that's why many illegal Mexican immigrants have low skill levels, they never could get higher education in their country, therefore they couldn't get a nice job like the rich people in Mexico (who more likely stay home, except for a few). Yet most immigrants coming to this country are willing to work their lives away and try to be a part of something bigger than they were but many people don't accept that and don't like the idea.

The only reason you don't see millions of illegal Argentinian, or Salvadoran, or Australian, or French or whatever immigrants in this country is because they just so don't happen to be our close neighbors to the south. Hypothetically speaking, if China was our neighbor to the south and Mexico was where China is, you would have millions of illegal Chinese immigrants in this country taking a bunch of low paying jobs and you would have a really low percentage of Mexican immigrants in this country, who more likely would have high skill jobs. It would be almost impossible for millions of poor Mexicans to travel half way across the world to get to the US.

But yea, I think immigrants do create an "engine of economic prosperity". But if Mexicans would stay in their country then they wouldn't be immigrants in their country. Mexico has had immigrants throughout their history also, and many of them became great people, I know that some of the most famous actors of  Mexico were immigrants. Also not to mention Mexican Carlos Slim, ex-richest man on earth, his dad was a Lebanese immigrant and his mom's parents were also Lebanese.

Today Mexico has a huge problem dealing with the war on drugs (organized crime) and I think that a part of the national govern along with some local governments are corrupt. I would say that's probably their biggest problems.

Hermione
Hermione

As far as immigrants being more 'fertile'...let me try to stop laughing here.

Hermione
Hermione

jmac

I did not know about the hysterectomy matter being acceptable to the RCC.  So condoms are a no-no, but a woman can have her insides cut out - fascinating.

TyPollard
TyPollard

@jmac 

In the good ole days minorites and women where glad to have limited opportunities so that white men could see the world in black and white ways. Good times.

Telkomin
Telkomin

@MediaWar@Lakjack21 

Mohammad SAW: 

Allah does Not need your noisy islam but your peace. 

Earth does Not need your noisy mosques but the peaceful earth.

Guiltyislam
Guiltyislam

@MediaWar@Lakjack21 

Indonesia: 

All muslims must pay more taxes for the pollutions the loud negative sounds from all noisy mosques or back to their hell arabian deserts.

webmaster@setneg.go.id

jmac
jmac

@Hermione  Joke found in gyn book on hysterectomies:    "What do you call a woman in San Diego who hasn't had a hysterectomy."   Answer:  A tourist.  It's a cottage industry.  

jmac
jmac

@Hermione It's a state secret.   We do 500,000 hysterectomies a year.   I had a Catholic gynecologist in San Diego who put up a big sign on the door of his practice that he would no longer offer any form of birth control, but he had one of the biggest practices in hysterectomies  - he pushed them.  He also had a lot of hispanic patients.  It makes sense.   It's like my husband's Baptist grandmother hiding her gin in her quilt chest and my Church of Christ neighbor in Virginia closing her curtains when she played cards.   Apparently, God is deaf, dumb and blind.