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The Miami Herald just reported the following statement from the Boston campaign office of GOP candidate Mitt Romney:

Puerto Rican Republican Governor Luis Fortuño

“It is an honor to have Governor Fortuño’s support,” said Mitt Romney.  “As president, I look forward to working with Governor Fortuño on the issues most pressing for the people of Puerto Rico – job creation, public safety and resolving the Island’s 113-year political status question.  Every job created on the Island is another American job added to our nation’s economic comeback.  Working together to continue Puerto Rico’s economic recovery will ensure Puerto Rico is part of the United States’ economic revitalization.  By implementing pro-growth policies that promote job creation, we can help Puerto Rico and the rest of the country.   We must also commit ourselves to stopping drug trafficking into Puerto Rico as a priority of the Federal Government and the required resources need to be assigned.  I will never neglect the U.S. Caribbean border and will continue to support strong trade and economic opportunity, and robust border security. In addition, I pledge to work with Congress to help the American citizens residing in Puerto Rico resolve their century-long status issue by choosing from the constitutionally-viable status options.  I look forward to working with Governor Fortuño on these issues as well as many other issues.”

“It is an honor to have Governor Fortuño’s support,” said Mitt Romney.  “As president, I look forward to working with Governor Fortuño on the issues most pressing for the people of Puerto Rico – job creation, public safety and resolving the Island’s 113-year political status question.  Every job created on the Island is another American job added to our nation’s economic comeback.  Working together to continue Puerto Rico’s economic recovery will ensure Puerto Rico is part of the United States’ economic revitalization.  By implementing pro-growth policies that promote job creation, we can help Puerto Rico and the rest of the country.   We must also commit ourselves to stopping drug trafficking into Puerto Rico as a priority of the Federal Government and the required resources need to be assigned.  I will never neglect the U.S. Caribbean border and will continue to support strong trade and economic opportunity, and robust border security. In addition, I pledge to work with Congress to help the American citizens residing in Puerto Rico resolve their century-long status issue by choosing from the constitutionally-viable status options.  I look forward to working with Governor Fortuño on these issues as well as many other issues.”

Announcing his support, Governor Fortuño said, “Mitt Romney is the one candidate who has the record, leadership, experience, and pro-growth plan to continue the course of private-sector job creation we’ve begun in Puerto Rico and provide economic stability for generations.  Mitt Romney has shown throughout his life that the principles learned in the private sector can be applied to all challenges, whether it was saving the 2002 Olympics or balancing the budget as Governor.”

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This just in from The Miami Herald:

“The Hispanic Republican political world is buzzing with talk that Puerto Rico’s governor, Luis Fortuño, has been in talks with Mitt Romney for an endorsement – and sources tell The Miami Herald he could swing his support as early as tomorrow in Orlando.”

Puerto Rican Governor Luis Fortuño

The article continues:

Romney’s campaign wouldn’t comment.

Friday would be a perfect day for an endorsement for Romney, who’s attending the Hispanic Leadership Network forum tomorrow in Doral before he heads to Orlando – seat of Orange County, which has one of the largest Puerto Rican Republican communities in the state.

More than 21,000 Hispanic Republicans live in the county, about 11 percent of the registered GOP. Nearby Osceola County has more than 8,500 registered Hispanic Republicans – about 21 percent of the GOP. It’s unclear how many are of Puerto Rican descent.

Romney has scheduled a 6:15 p.m. press conference in Orlando. Said one Republican about a potential Fortuño endorsement: “This should happen.”

Said another: “It’s 99.9 percent going to happen.”

**Update Fortuño is coming to Florida tomorrow. He’ll host a 2 p.m. tour and press conference with U.S. Senator  Marco Rubio, Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos Gimenez, Commissioner Rebeca Sosa to discuss port security, drug trafficking and the U.S. Caribbean Border.

A Fortuño endorsement would be a coup purely from a media standpoint – it would guarantee high-profile, positive coverage and feed the Romney narrative of momentum.”

The jury is still out for us, since the Romney campaign might need to do a little more homework about how polarizing a politician Fortuño has become on the island. In addition, it is clear that Fortuño has actually benefited from an Obama administration the last few months, now that the US economy is improving and unemployment figures are decreasing on the mainland. Puerto Rico has seen two consecutive months of unemployment decreases for the first time in Fortuño’s administration. However, government jobs continue to be one of the largest employment sectors in Puerto Rico.

Finally, the question remains for Florida: with all the new arrivals coming from the island to the Sunshine State, is a Fortuño endorsement even going to get Romney anything?

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