Why Does Mel Martinez Hate America?

From Holden:

Former Bush cabinet member/Republican Senator from Florida Mel Martinez knows a lame duck when he sees one. Republican congressmen may be beginning to realize that the White House needs them more than they need the White House, and with a majority of Americans disagreeing with Bush on every major issue Martinez knows which side of the bread to butter.

U.S. Sen. Mel Martinez said Friday that the Bush administration should consider Sen. Joseph Biden’s suggestion to shut down the U.S. military’s prison camp on Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.

He also criticized the administration and Congress for paying little attention to growing Latin American problems and lamented the slow progress in Iraq.


“It’s become an icon for bad stories and at some point you wonder the cost-benefit ratio,” said Martinez, R-Fla. “How much do you get out of having that facility there? Is it serving all the purposes you thought it would serve when initially you began it? Or can this be done some other way a little better?”

Martinez, a lawyer, added, “It’s not very American, by the way, to be holding people indefinitely. Now they’re like POWs, and the conflict is still ongoing and typically you wouldn’t release POWs until the end of the conflict.”


“The administration has been very remiss for the last four years in its direction toward Latin America to their great consternation now,” Martinez said. “There is a growing recognition of the administration and in Congress that we have not been paying enough attention to a region that’s really in trouble.


Martinez, who backed the war in Iraq during his Senate campaign, raised questions about the progress there.

“I am discouraged by how long it has taken for us to begin to draw down some forces,” he said. “I would have thought by now, and I think in a clearer moment that the president and (Defense) Secretary (Donald) Rumsfeld would have thought that by now we would be in a position to be able to draw down some forces. Unfortunately that doesn’t seem to be the case.”

He said he has had to write many condolence letters to families of Floridians killed in Iraq.

“It brings home the importance of the decision to send men and women to go to war,” he said. “It has become a foreign fighters’ war against us there and the progress seems slow and difficult.”