MIAMI (CBSNews) — On Tuesday, former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush warned the Republican Party that it should stop “acting stupid” when it comes to immigration and other issues that matter to Hispanic voters.
But Thursday, the former governor said there’s “no question” the party will heed his advice.
“It’s smart politics,” Bush said on “CBS This Morning.” “Demography is destiny in America. Ten years from now, Hispanic voters will be not only the deciding vote in swing states, but increasingly in a lot of other states.”
American politics, Bush said, “has been pushed down to very low common denominator,” and the Republican primary specifically, he said, was “really orientated to a base group of voters.”
Now, however, leaders like Mitt Romney are beginning to “shift focus.” The diversity of the Republican Party has been spotlighted this week at the Republican National Convention, Bush said, with speakers like former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice.
Republicans are realizing, Bush said, that “it’s stupid to threaten to put kerosene on your head and a match on this side and go, ‘If you don’t change how you are, I’m going to light it.’”
Thursday night it’s Romney’s chance to win over voters with his convention speech, and Bush said he has to connect with voters and demonstrate he understands their concerns. However, he said, that doesn’t mean he has to change his reserved, private personality.
“You can be a very effective leader without having to spill your guts,” Bush said, adding that there have been “a lot of presidents in history who didn’t feel compelled to get on a couch and psychoanalyze themselves.”
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