— The Bush campaign is sending in its “secret weapon” to attract young and Latino voters: George P. Bush, nephew of the Republican presidential candidate.
The photogenic 24-year-old kicks off a three-week tour today, in support of his uncle, Texas Gov. George W. Bush, that will cover more than a dozen states in the West, Southeast, and Midwest, as part of the campaign’s effort to reach out to young and Latino voters. The tour gets under way today in New Mexico, with a voter registration drive in Albuquerque and a “VIVA Bush Barbecue” in Belen.
George P., the son of Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and his Mexican-born wife Columba, is a fluent Spanish-speaker and has already starred in English and Spanish campaign ads for his uncle. He has been named Youth Chairman of the Republican convention — a position sure to bring him even more publicity.
The Rice University graduate practiced his stumping skills during this winter’s hard-fought Republican primaries. While his uncle fended off an unexpected challenge by Sen. John McCain, George P. visited more than 60 high schools and 25 colleges in New Hampshire and California trying to convince young people to get involved in politics. At joint appearances, George W. has taken to introducing his nephew as “a star in our family.”
Most Eligible Bush
George P.’s star value is rising beyond the family and the political world. Recently People named him No. 4 on its list of the 100 Most Eligible Bachelors. In the magazine’s profile, the younger George discusses the dating advice his grandfather gives him. Former President George Bush tells his grandson to “relax, give things time, get to know her.”
In recent weeks, George W. Bush has addressed minority organizations such as the NAACP, the League of United Latin American Citizens, and the La Raza conference. These visits are part of his effort to paint himself as a “different kind of Republican.”
During his gubernatorial campaigns in Texas, Bush attracted significant percentages of the Hispanic vote, and he’s hoping to achieve similar success on the national level. In speeches he frequently refers to his sister-in-law and her three children, especially his photogenic nephew George P.
“I am proud of my nephew, George P.,” Bush said. “He is bright, charming and energetic, and I am honored he is joining me on the campaign trail.”
The tour continues in Denver, Colo., Wednesday where George P. will meet with young Republicans and will visit the La Raza Teen Center. — ABCNEWS’ Jackie Shaner and the Associated Press contributed to this report.