Congressional Hispanic Caucus (CHC) on Thursday reject….
Rep. Carlos Curbelo’s (R-Fla.) request to join the once bipartisan group.
CHC: “After due consideration, the CHC determined not to accept Rep. Curbelo’s request to join the Caucus,” spokesman Carlos Paz Jr. said in a statement after the group held a closed-door majority vote.
CURBELO: Appeared before the group in the morning to plead his case. his appearance was followed by deliberations that include several CHC members and ended with a meeting between Rep.Michelle Lujan Grisham (D-N.M.) the group’s chairman. “[Curbelo] made a presentation and it was a good presentation,”
Lujan Grisham said after the vote, but Curbelo’s presentation didn’t sway enough CHC members, many of whom have publicly sparred with the Republican lawmaker during the application process.
ONE-SIDED: The CHC is a bipartisan organization on paper, but it hasn’t had Republican members since a spat over Cuba Policy created a rift in 1997.
At the time, three Republican members- including still-serving Rep. Ileana Ros- Lehtinen (R-Fla) – left the organization and founded the Congressional Hispanic Conference in 2003.
REP.MARIO DIAZ-BALART: (R-Fla), chairman of the Hispanic Conference, told reporters earlier this month the two organizations should work together, where they find common ground, but noted the practicality of having separated partisan groups.
“The reality is, just from what I’ve heard, they might accept Carlos but then they’re going to have to throw him out when they’re dealing with partisan issues,” said Diaz Balart. “I don’t have a problem with that, but the reality is that in essence, that’s why there’s been two and why they’re partisan.”
But Thursday, Curbelo emphasized his views that Hispanics in Congress should caucus under a single roof.
“Unbelievably, petty partisan interests have led the CHC to formally endorse the segregation of American Hispanics. It is a dark day on Capitol Hill,” he said in a statement.
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