Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush (R) listed himself as Hispanic on a 2009 voter-registration form obtained by The New York Times from the Miami-Dade County Elections Department.
Bush, the likely Republican presidential candidate, spent two years living in Venezula, and speaks fluent Spanish. He is married to Columba Bush, who was born in Mexico, the Times noted on Monday.
The former governor hails from the influential Bush political dynasty which, New York magazine noted, helped settle Plymouth Colony. Bush’s family has been described by Slate’s Jacob Weisberg in his book The Bush Tragedy as “New England WASP.”
Bush has taken pains so far to not tack to the hard right on immigration
policy. Meanwhile, anti-immigration hardliners like Laura Ingraham have
warned that Bush’s support for reforming the nation’s immigration system (which at times have seemed hazy) could be his undoing if he got the 2016 presidential nomination.
According to The New York Times, a spokeswoman for Bush couldn’t offer an explanation about why the former governor listed himself as Hispanic under “race/ethnicity” in the form, which can be seen here. The driver’s license number and social security number has been redacted to follow Florida law on publicly releasing documents.
“It’s unclear where the paperwork error was made,” Bush spokeswoman Kristy Campbell told TPM. “The Governor’s family certainly got a good laugh out of it.”
This post has been updated.