The Palm Beach Post had a very interesting article on it:
Crist backs Martinez for Senate seat
Palm Beach Post, Jim Ash
To view the entire article, please visit: http://www.palmbeachpost.com/news/content/auto/epaper/editions/friday/news_044a9399643c32150084.html
TALLAHASSEE – U.S. Senate hopeful Mel Martinez picked up a high-powered endorsement on Thursday, posing for photographers with Florida Attorney General Charlie Crist.
The former U.S. Secretary of Housing and Urban Development and the former Orange County Commission chairman told reporters that he was naming Crist as his campaign chairman.
“I am honored to have the endorsement of a fellow conservative who has devoted his life to serving Florida families,” Martinez said. “Together, we are going to protect and expand the Republican majority in the U.S. Senate.”
Crist is a former legislator from the St. Petersburg area, and Martinez said he hopes that will help him lock up another corner of the strategically important I-4 corridor in the central part of the state, home to thousands of active Republican voters.
Crist, a fellow conservative, said the two also share a uniquely American experience.
Crist’s grandfather emigrated from Cyprus. Martinez, who was born in 1946 in Sagua La Grande, Cuba, arrived in Miami in 1962, as part of the storied “Pedro Pan” humanitarian evacuation of children fleeing Fidel Castro.
“We share the same values, conservative values,” Christ said. “We also share the same concern about freedom.”
When it comes to defending freedom, Martinez was barraged with questions about his position on Iraq and the war on terror.
Toeing his former boss’s line, Martinez said he supports President Bush’s Iraq policy, as well as his fellow Cabinet member, embattled Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld. Rumsfeld should soldier on, despite suggestions from critics that he resign to atone for the detainee abuse scandal at the American-run Abu Ghraib prison compound in Baghdad, Martinez said.
“I know Secretary Rumsfeld is an honorable man,” Martinez said. “He is a friend of mine, he is a stand-up guy. I’m proud of him.”
Martinez said he would not advocate the release of hundreds of photographs that graphically depict sexual abuse and humiliation of Iraqi detainees by American soldiers, despite a need to bring the investigations to a conclusion as quickly as possible.
Martinez said he would not want to risk jeopardizing the prosecutions.
“It would be very sad to release the pictures and as a result of that, not be able to punish the guilty,” he said.
I think Mel Martinez would be an asset to people’s housing needs as a U.S. Senator, and I think he would be a very good one, at that. I also think Charlie Crist, who I worked for in 1998 as an intern, would make a wonderful governor for our Great State of Florida.