James Hirsen was in a very gushy mood in his Sept. 13 Newsmax column:
In Mexico, Eduardo Verástegui is a household name. He's a musical entertainer and telenovelas superstar.
His career blossomed in the United States as well as in Mexico, with his celebrity status rising as he worked with high-profile industry figures such as Calvin Klein, Jennifer Lopez, and Sofia Vergara, to name a few.
Over the years he acquired a number of movies and television shows under his belt, which include "Chasing Papi," "Bella," "Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2," "CSI: Miami," and "Charmed."
Most recently, he played the roles of lead producer and cast member for the international film phenom "The Sound of Freedom," which has now reached a level close to $200 million in global box office.
In his latest project, he has chosen to enter the political arena, and he's going for a top-tier spot. The necessary paperwork has already filed for his run as an independent presidential candidate in Mexico's June 2024 election.
Verástegui's motivation to have a role with a purpose in the public square may relate to the time period in which he experienced one of his big Hollywood acting breakthroughs.
Hirsen went on to soft-pedal Verástegui's views:
In his recent Mexican presidential candidate announcement, he emphasized life and freedom as the key driving principles in his decision.
In the past, he campaigned for pro-life causes and conducted prayers on social media. In addition, he put his faith into action, establishing Manto De Guadalupe, a pro-life organization based in Los Angeles, which includes a crisis pregnancy center.
His announcement of a presidential run comes after the Mexico Supreme Court issued an unthinkable landmark decision that legalizes abortion in a once-fervently faith-filled country; it's a decision that paves the way for a massive increase in the killing of life in the womb, as of yet unborn.
Verástegui is portraying himself as a new kind of leader. This may be advantageous for him because he is able to stand in stark contrast to the established parties, which the public, in large part, distrusts.
PAN, Mexico's purported right-of-center party, is likely to be targeted by Verástegui's presidential campaign in a manner reminiscent of U.S. candidates that have run against Republicans of the establishment kind.
But Hirsen is hiding just how extreme Verástegui's right-wing politics are, which include anti-abortion extremism and admiration for right-wing authoritarians. According to Reuters:
Eduardo Verastegui, an outspoken Mexican actor and right-wing activist who calls Donald Trump "my friend," is hoping to unite his country's conservatives with a long-shot presidential bid ahead of next year's elections.
He called doctors performing abortions assassins and said they should be imprisoned for "a minimum of 100 years."
"We're a Catholic country governed by an anti-Catholic government," he said.
In 2022, Verastegui organized CPAC Mexico, a local spinoff of the conservative political conference that has boosted hard-right leaders like Trump, Bolsonaro and Hungary's Prime Minister Viktor Orban.
Verastegui told Reuters he looks to Orban, as well as Hungary's President Katalin Novak and Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni, as models among global leaders.
"The Hungary model seems very good to me: country, family, freedom," Verastegui said.
Verástegui also danced around how "Sound of Freedom" -- which of course, Newsmax loved -- leans into QAnon conspiracy theories, according to reutiers: Verastegui said he had heard of QAnon, but that he did not know anything about it. Asked if he rejects the idea that Democrats are engaged in a pedophilia ring, Verastegui said "there are good people and bad people on all sides."
Instead of telling his readers the truth about Verástegui, Hirsen chose to gush even more over him:
An amazing arc of success surrounds Verástegui's life. A providential win of the presidency could be forthcoming.
If this happens, positive changes will surely be in store for our neighboring country South of the Border.
And the world will get to see a glimmering example of how celebrity power can work for the good.
Only someone like Hirsen would portray Verástegui's right-wing authoritarianism as something "good" and "positive.