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Jeb Bush Brings Asian Immigrants Into 'Anchor Baby' Debate

The former Florida governor was taking aim at Donald Trump, but ended up firing at Asian immigrants, too.
Jeb Bush, former governor of Florida and 2016 Republican presidential candidate, right, drinks a beer as he talks to Chris McLinden, Bush’s Dallas county chair, in a beer tent at the Iowa State Fair in Des Moines, Iowa, U.S., on Friday, Aug. 14, 2015. Sampling a fried Snickers bar and sidestepping a few hecklers, Jeb Bush made his way through the Iowa State Fair on Friday as he tried, and at times showed signs of struggling, to present himself as a fresh voice in the Republican presidential field.

Jeb Bush, former governor of Florida and 2016 Republican presidential candidate, right, drinks a beer as he talks to Chris McLinden, Bush’s Dallas county chair, in a beer tent at the Iowa State Fair in Des Moines, Iowa, U.S., on Friday, Aug. 14, 2015. Sampling a fried Snickers bar and sidestepping a few hecklers, Jeb Bush made his way through the Iowa State Fair on Friday as he tried, and at times showed signs of struggling, to present himself as a fresh voice in the Republican presidential field.

Photographer: Andrew Harrer

Jeb Bush entered the Republican presidential race by portraying himself as the voice of reason on immigration policy, an issue that has hurt the party among Hispanic and Asian voters. He aimed to amplify that message on Monday when he traveled to a U.S. border town in Texas to take aim at Donald Trump's immigration plan.

Instead, after repeated questions from reporters in Spanish and English about his use of the term "anchor babies," Bush said it wasn't derogatory because of his own Mexican-American family and then pointed to the "Asian people" who, he said, are more likely to exploit a provision in the U.S. Constitution that gives citizenship to those born in the country.