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Bush committed felony in 2009

(Prezography photo)

(Prezography photo)

By The Iowa Statesman

 

Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, seen by many as the candidate to beat in the 2016 Republican presidential nomination process, committed a felony when he filled out his voter registration form in 2009.

According to a report by the New York Times published this morning, Bush signed the form after identifying himself as “Hispanic” on the demographics portion of the document. The Times also published a redacted version of the document to its website.

The form was filed due to a change of address and was on file with the Miami-Dade Elections Office. The document appears to show “Hispanic” and “White, not of Hispanic Origin” are next to each other on the document, but the options are arranged horizontally to seemingly avoid confusion. The current form in use by the State of Florida lists the demographics options vertically.

The story apparently became a laughing matter for the Bush family when the candidate’s son, Jeb Bush Jr., posted the following on Twitter:

Jeb Bush Jr Voter Reg Tweet

The candidate then replied with the following:

Jeb Bush Voter Reg Tweet

In Florida, where voter fraud and illegal immigration — one of Bush’s signature issues — have combined to create a widespread problem, attesting to incorrect information on a voter registration form is not a laughing matter. It’s a third-class felony — comparable to a Class D felony in Iowa — with penalties of up to $5,000 in fines and up to five years in prison.

Bush, who is the son of former President George H.W. Bush and his wife, Barbara — both of whom are white — does speak Spanish and did live for a time in Mexico. He met his wife, Columba, who was born in Mexico, while teaching English as part of a foreign exchange program through his prep school. Columba became a naturalized U.S. citizen after marrying Jeb in 1974.

This isn’t the first time Bush has attempted to change his race for political purposes. During a 2012 Hispanic Leadership Network event, he quipped, “If Bill Clinton is the first black president, then Iā€™m definitely the first Cuban ā€” or Latino ā€” governor of Florida.” In actuality, the first and only Latino governor of Florida was Bob Martinez, a Republican, who served from 1987 to 1991.

The Bush campaign has yet to respond to questions about the report.