“The political arm of the Heritage Foundation … plans to release detailed evaluations of all the presidential candidates for the first time this September, … and it hasn’t ruled out endorsing a candidate during the Republican primary. … The ‘Presidential Platform Index’ will assess candidates across six categories: opportunity, growth, civil society, limited government, national security and favoritism.” Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) “will visit Heritage’s offices at noon Wednesday to speak about his tax plan.” (Politico)
COME ON DOWN. Florida Gov. Rick Scott (R) will host Rubio, former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush (R), New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R), former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee (R), Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal (R), former Texas Gov. Rick Perry (R), and Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker (R) for an economic summit in Orlando on June 2. (release)
CUBA REACTION. Several Republican presidential hopefuls weighed on President Obama’s call to remove Cuba from the State Sponsors of Terrorism List.
Bush: “President Obama embraced Cuba’s oppressive dictator, Raul Castro by removing Cuba from the State Sponsors of Terrorism List and consummating the Obama Administration’s rapprochement with the Communist police state. Coupled with this policy of accommodation with Cuba is the Administration’s failure to respond sooner and more forcefully to the deteriorating situation in Venezuela, where the policies of late dictator Hugo Chavez and his chosen successor, Nicolás Maduro continue to hurt their people. Beyond denying their citizens the basic freedoms all humans deserve, the Castro and Maduro regimes continue to engage in activities abroad that undermine stability in this pivotal region.” (release)
Cruz: “It is dangerous and reckless to use a terrorist designation as a negotiating tool, as their regime continues to support and harbor terrorists who have murdered Americans. We need better than a promise of future change; Cuba needs to prove it. And, until Cuba does, any discussion about changing its terrorist designation should be off the table.” (release)
Rubio said the move “sends a chilling message to our enemies abroad that this White House is no longer serious about calling terrorism by its proper name.” (Miami Herald)