Mel Martinez on Principles & Values
Republican Jr Senator (FL); previously Secretary of H.U.D.
That was an issue Mel cared deeply about--and not just because he represented Florida in the US Senate. Mel had his own amazing immigrant story. Born in Sagua La Grande, Cuba, he was 15 years old and spoke virtually no English when he was brought to America in a humanitarian effort called Operation Peter Pan. He lived in youth facilities and foster homes for 4 years before being reunited with his family in Orlando. He finished college and law school and became a successful lawyer.
He was right. Republicans will face an ever-shrinking base--and ultimately extinction--if they continue to alienate the voters they lost in great numbers in 2012, including single women, blacks & gays.
The Senate is the only federal office carrying a six-year term, so a decision about whether to run for re-election is one that my family and I have carefully considered over the past year.
The inescapable truth, for me, is that the call to public service is strong, but the call to home, family and lifelong friends is even stronger. So today, with deep love for this country and with sincere gratitude to the people who placed their trust in me, I announce that I will not run for reelection to the US Senate.
So with two years left in my term, I make this announcement today in order to give the many qualified individuals who might choose to try to succeed me an opportunity to organize and gather support. I look forward to serving out these next two years.
After graduating from high school, he attended Florida State University, where he received his undergraduate and law degrees. Mel was the first popularly elected Republican to serve as Orange County Chairman. Mel quickly earned a reputation as a bold leader, a tax-cutter, and a champion of law enforcement. Mel and his wife of 33 years, Kitty, have three children and two grandchildren. They reside in Orlando.
Martinez, 56, has avoided addressing his political future since speculation began earlier this year that GOP strategists were leaning on him to seek the seat of Sen. Bob Graham, a Democrat pursuing the nomination for president. Martinez, who fled Cuba as a teenager, has been touted by some Republicans as someone who could produce a massive turnout among Republican-leaning Cuban-American voters in South Florida. Hispanic voters in central Florida, his home region, are considered a key constituent in the state’s electoral battleground.
"In the past month, many Senators have asked me about my judicial philosophy. It is simple: fidelity to the law. The task of a judge is not to make the law--it is to apply the law. And it is clear, I believe, that my record in two courts reflects my rigorous commitment to interpreting the Constitution according to its terms; interpreting statutes according to their terms and Congress's intent; and hewing faithfully to precedents established by the Supreme Court and my Circuit Court. In each case I have heard, I have applied the law to the facts at hand."
The GOP controls the Senate by just one vote. Even with today’s margin, the GOP doesn’t have effective control of the agenda as the Democrats use the filibuster to kill pro-growth reform or crucial judicial appointments. The next Senate could confirm two U.S. Supreme Court justices.
If the Republicans do manage to pick up a few extra seats in the Senate, there could also be an ideological shift toward pro-growth issues. Right now, the balance of power is in the hands of the RINO Republicans like Olympia Snowe and Arlen Specter. With a seat pick-up for the GOP, plus the addition of GOP superstars, Olympia and Arlen would no longer be deciding votes. We could move away from watered-down Republicanism toward a genuine pro-growth agenda.
Members of the Club are economic conservatives, like-minded political contributors who are frustrated with the ideological drift of both parties today. Club members have a shared goal of contributing to and electing more Reaganites to Congress who are willing to stand for the issues like: cutting taxes, controlling federal spending, personal accounts for Social Security, ending the death tax, eliminating the capital gains tax, fundamental tax reform, providing true school choice and minimizing government's role in our daily lives.
The stakes are mighty high in the Senate elections. That’s why we’re providing you now with our outlook for every competitive Senate race and a list of our top tier choices. The “A” List Candidates make this list because their races are competitive and they are the very best on economic issues. The “B” List Candidates are all in hotly contested races too, but they are not as rock solid on economic growth issues.
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