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Oct 17, 2011 12:01 PM by Matt Stafford

GOP showcasing Hispanic stars

ALBUQUERQUE, NM (AP) - New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez, Nevada Gov. Brian Sandoval and Florida Sen. Marc Rubio are popular, political newcomers who toe a safe party line in presidential battleground states.

The rising GOP stars are also Hispanics - a fact the Republican Party clearly hopes to capitalize on in the upcoming national elections.

Republicans are inviting them on international fact finding trips, courting them for high-profile public appearances and whispering their names as possibilities for vice presidential nominations.

Fred Malek, founder of the conservative American Action Network, says the party sees an opportunity to lure more moderate and conservative Hispanics with pro-family, pro-jobs, strong work-ethic themes that appeal to immigrants. And these three "represent the American Dream."

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