Last Hispanic GOP Senator Mel Martinez Resigns

Adios, GOP racism?


Working with the Penguin? Not so good. (Photo:

Times have been tough for the Republican Party lately. Sex scandals among senators and governors, radio personalities spewing racist hate, Sarah Palin teetering off for reasons known only to her… not to mention resignations. Now Florida Senator Mel Martinez, 62, has joined that party. He will not return to the Senate after this recess, according to But will he need no fax payday loans or cash advances back in the private sector?

He stayed around for Sotomayor

Mel Martinez was one of just nine Republicans who voted in favor of confirming Sonia Sotomayor as Supreme Court Justice. It appears that he stayed in office just long enough to cast a stinging vote against his party by saying yes to the highly experienced Sotomayor. One wonders if the racist rhetoric the Republican Party had been bandying about in reference to Sotomayor backfired. Perhaps they alienated their only Hispanic member in the Senate (Mel Martinez) and will have to find a new way to make hay in Florida, where there is a large Hispanic presence.

Here’s a little window into the stinkin’ thinkin’ that’s been flying out of GOP pie holes lately. It’s not a Rush clip; that would have been too easy:

But that’s not the official story, of course

Mel Martinez, a first-term United States senator, will not seek re-election in 2010. In fact, he won’t even be coming back after the August 2009 recess. At this point, it is uncertain whether there is a candidate he will endorse to replace him.

“My priorities have always been my faith, my family and my country and at this stage in my life, and after nearly 12 years of public service in Florida and Washington, it’s time I return to Florida and my family,” Martinez said in a letter obtained by FOX News. “So today I’m announcing my decision to step down from public office, effective on a successor taking office to fill out the remainder of my term.”

He says it’s “for family”

And that may very well be a factor. Not surprisingly, the announcement drew fire from Democrats. Eric Schultz of the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee said that “Republicans seem to have a problem fulfilling their oaths of office. This is the largest number of retirements for one party in the Senate in the past 80 years. The country faces enormous challenges right now, and voters are watching who is up to the task.”

The departure of Mel Martinez isn’t exactly a surprise, as rumors about family issues had been around for a few months, says FOX News.

Who will take his place?

Florida Gov. Charlie Crist has told the Associated Press that he will not step in to fill the vacancy, but he definitely will be appointing at least an interim replacement. He won’t appoint himself because doing so would likely anger his voting constituency. Considering that Democrats already hold a super majority in the Senate, Republicans need all the help they can get. Losing another seat definitely matters, as would staying on the good side of Hispanics in the state. GOP Senate candidate and former Florida House Speaker Marco Rubio appears to be the man for the job, but nothing has been made official yet.

The stench of the Bush

Mel Martinez did not acknowledge that he’d have difficulty being re-elected in a state that Obama won in 2008. However, it is believed that his ties to former President George W. Bush (Mel Martinez was the U.S. Secretary of Housing and Urban Development) and attempts to push an immigration bill made him unpopular with fellow Republicans, reports FOX News.

I wish Mr. Martinez well in his future endeavors. Spending more time with family is something that more Americans should do, considering the fragility of family life anymore. If he finds that he needs no fax payday loans or cash advances in his private life, he can request them here. Won’t you do the same?

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