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Bush to publish book with his paintings of 43 immigrants

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A new book by former President George W. Bush will highlight an issue which now sets him apart from many of his fellow Republicans — immigration.

Crown announced Thursday that Bush’s “Out Of Many, One: Portraits of America’s Immigrants” will be published March 2. The book includes 43 portraits by the 43rd president, four-color paintings of immigrants he has come to know over the years, along with biographical essays he wrote about each of them.

“Out of Many, One: Portraits of America’s Immigrants” by George W. Bush.Crown / via AP

Bush, who served as president from 2001-2009, has often praised the contributions of immigrants, a notable contrast to President Donald Trump’s rhetoric and policies. As president, Bush supported a bipartisan immigration reform bill that narrowly failed to pass in 2007, with opposition coming from both liberals and conservatives.

“While I recognize that immigration can be an emotional issue, I reject the premise that it is a partisan issue. It is perhaps the most American of issues, and it should be one that unites us,” Bush writes in the new book’s introduction, noting that he did not want it to come out during the election season. Bush has not endorsed Trump or his presumptive Democratic opponent, former Vice President Joe Biden.

“My hope is that this book will help focus our collective attention on the positive impacts that immigrants are making on our country.”

The book will serve as a companion to an upcoming exhibition at the George W. Bush Presidential Center in Dallas.

“Both ’Out of Many, One” and the exhibition of the same name will include bold, principle-based solutions that comprehensively address the current debate on immigration,” according to Crown. “At the heart of the recommendations is the belief that every year that passes without reforming the nation’s broken system means missed opportunities to ensure the future prosperity, vitality, and security of our country.”

Bush has become a dedicated portrait painter and best-selling author since leaving the White House. His memoir “Decision Points” has sold more than 3 million copies, and his other books include “41,” about his father, former President George H.W. Bush; and a collection of paintings of military veterans, “Portraits of Courage.”

He will donate a portion of his “Out Of Many, One” proceeds to organizations that help immigrants resettle. Financial terms were otherwise not disclosed. Bush was represented by Robert Barnett, the Washington attorney whose other clients have included former President Barack Obama and former President Bill Clinton.

The book will be released as a standard trade hardcover and in an autographed deluxe edition, listed for $250, that will be clothbound and contained within a slipcover.

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Macron's Brexit REVENGE: UK warned France to force huge disruption over EU exit bill fury

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EMMANUEL MACRON could choose to cause significant disruption to the UK as payback for the new Brexit Bill, according to an expert.

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Citing Uighur mistreatment, U.S. restricts imports from China’s Xinjiang region

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WASHINGTON – U.S. Customs and Border Protection issued orders on Monday that will block certain products from the Xinjiang region of China from entering the U.S. due to allegations of forced labor involved in their production.

The move comes as part of the Trump administration’s efforts to crack down on China for its persecution of the Uighur Muslim minority group.

More than 1 million Uighurs from the western Xinjiang province are believed to be held in internment camps where they are forced to study Marxism, renounce their religion, work in factories and face abuse, according to human rights groups and first-hand accounts from Uighurs. Beijing refers to the centers as “re-education camps” and says they provide vocational training and are necessary to fight extremism.

The bans, called “withhold release orders,” will block goods such as cotton, computer parts, hair products and apparel made by certain Chinese producers in Xinjiang suspected to use Uighur forced labor.

The order also bans all products made in a particular “re-education” camp in Xinjiang, the Lop County No. 4 Vocational Skills Education and Training Center, that Ken Cuccinelli, the official performing the duties of deputy Homeland Security Secretary, said practiced “modern day slavery,” likening it to a concentration camp.

“Communist Chinese China needs to close its concentration camps, set its captives free and end its state-sponsored forced labor program immediately,” Cuccinelli said. “Until they do, DHS will continue to block illicit goods and prosecute those who profit from them.”

Reached for comment Monday, a Chinese embassy spokesperson referred to comments made last week by foreign ministry spokesperson Zhao Lijian.

“Lately China has shown with facts and numbers that issues relating to Xinjiang are by no means about human rights, ethnicity or religion, but about counter-terrorism and anti-separatism,” Zhao said.

“What the U.S. truly cares about is never human rights. It is just using human rights as a cover to suppress Chinese companies, undermine stability in Xinjiang and vilify China’s Xinjiang policy,” he added.

It’s unclear which American or international brands might be affected by the orders, but big name brands like Tommy Hilfiger were affected by a previous withhold release order issued against another Chinese company earlier this year.

One of the orders blocks goods from a Xinjiang factory that used to supply garments to Lacoste and was highlighted in a March report by the Workers’ Rights Consortium, a non-profit that tracks supply chains. Lacoste has since ceased sourcing from the company.

The specific products banned are as follows: Hair products made in the Lop County Hair Product Industrial Park, apparel produced by Yili Zhuowan Garment Manufacturing Co. Ltd. and Baoding LYSZD Trade and Business Co., Ltd, cotton produced and processed by Xinjiang Junggar Cotton and Linen Co. and computer parts made by Hefei Bitland Information Technology Co.

The order does not go as far as to initiate a region-wide ban on goods, particularly cotton and tomatoes from Xinjiang.

Acting CBP Commissioner Mark Morgan and Cuccinelli told reporters that a regional withhold release order is still being considered.

Morgan said CBP continues to “compile evidence on (tomato and cotton products) while determining if that evidence meets the legal standard for a withhold release order on a region wide basis.”

Goods produced in Xinjiang are often sold to intermediary vendors who supply big name brands, so tracking the supply chain is a challenge.

The orders issued Monday are likely to heighten already strained tensions over trade between the U.S. and China.

Robert Daly, director of the Kissinger Institute on China and the United States at the Wilson Center, applauded the order but said he doubts it will affect Beijing’s policies in Xinjiang unless a large number of other nations impose similar boycotts.

“It will simply reinforce the Chinese Communist Party’s belief that the U.S. determined to smear China on every front in a futile attempt to thwart its rise,” he said.

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'That's NOT enough!' Priti Patel in fiery clash with BBC host over COVID testing capacity

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PRITI PATEL suffered an intense grilling on BBC Radio 4 over the Government’s failure to meet the increasing demands of coronavirus tests as the deadly virus continues to grow in the UK.

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