The race for the Republican nomination for Attorney General got quite a bit more interesting this week after a bizarre email was sent out by the John Brownlee campaign that had lots of immigration enforcement activists scratching their heads. At a debate in Southside this week, Brownlee claimed that Ken Cuccinelli had stated his opposition to having employers use E-Verify in the Commonwealth and tried to paint himself as the true immigration enforcement candidate. Up until now, I’d had quite a bit of respect for Brownlee who had been right on the issues for the most part and seemed like a genuinely nice guy. After this brazen lie however, it’s terribly clear that Brownlee is not the guy to be our candidate in November.
Brownlee’s email passed off this whopper, apparently thinking that the electorate has forgotten Ken Cucinelli’s record:
In response to a question regarding illegal aliens and undocumented workers, John Brownlee said he strongly supports “the use of the U.S. government’s E-Verify system.” Brownlee supports making the use of E-Verify mandatory for all employers in the Commonwealth, including the state government, in an effort to reduce the number of illegal aliens in Virginia. E-Verify is a proven and effective resource for employers to verify citizenship / residency status and screen out illegals who are seeking employment.
In a response to the same question, State Senator Ken Cuccinelli said he opposed requiring private employers to use E-Verify, suggesting the system was too flawed to be reliable.
Independent reports from the event don’t at all jive with Brownlee’s depiction of what happened. Cuccinelli said no such thing. Not even close. What Cuccinelli pointed out was that his experience in trying to get E-Verify passed in the hostile Senate it was a better political tactic to get the Senate to support mandating E-Verify for state employees, and it makes eminent sense to impose requirements first on government before businesses are required to comply with them. If you want to get something through the Senate — a place Cuccinelli knows well, but where Brownlee apparently maintains a dedicated sense of general incompetence, you simply can’t introduce a sensible bill and expect it to survive. Experience matters.
How that supposedly translates into E-Verify being “flawed” pretty much requires you make a determination about Brownlee’s character, and not in a favorable way. Such a statement flies in the face of Cuccinelli’s dedication to this very issue long before Brownlee even knew what E-Verify was.
My personal experience lobbying for E-Verify in Richmond over the past several years on behalf of Save The Old Dominion has been that Ken Cuccinelli is the very best Senator on this issue that we have. When Chuck Colgan introduced E-Verify bills and pledged to get them through using his senority and political power, only to immediately abandon the bills as soon as they started going through committees that immediately killed them, Ken Cuccinelli was the only Senator actively working to support them. On the Courts of Justice Committee where some Republican Senators who should have been reliable votes failed us miserably, Ken was nearly the only Senator who not only could be relied on, but who would actively try to get these bills passed.
When these bills couldn’t get passed either due to Chuck Colgan abandoning his promises, or Ken Stolle siding up to his big-business buddies to protect their ability to unlawfully hire cheap illegal alien labor, Cuccinelli introduced and got passed the bills that actually could make it through the nightmare of our Senate of Virginia, such as SB517. These weren’t the best bills that immigration enforcement advocates could have hoped for, but they were progress, and all of that progress had Ken’s name on it. Simply put, without Ken Cuccinelli, Virginia wouldn’t have done at thing to address this issue.
Yet Brownlee thinks we’re going to buy this garbage about Cuccinelli being soft on illegal aliens taking American jobs. This is a crock of stinking doo-doo, and he knows it.
Brownlee himself ought to answer a few questions about why he doesn’t support localities entering into agreements under Section 287(g) with the Bureau of Immigration and Customs Enforcement, such as Prince William County has done. Prince William County has turned over roughly 1,300 criminal illegal aliens for deportation. Would Brownlee prefer we release those 1,300 criminal illegal aliens back onto our streets as we were pretty much doing before entering this program? Perhaps Brownlee, who fashions himself as such the immigration enforcement candidate can explain his complete absence from Richmond this year when State Legislators For Legal Immigration (where Cuccinelli is a founding member) was trying to lobby Richmond and push along legislation to help address the illegal alien issue? For someone who can brazenly lie about how someone else is weak on this issue, he sure hasn’t done anything at all other than make a few speeches about it. About the only concrete thing he has done about the illegal alien issue was to lie about the positions of its greatest ally in the Senate of Virginia.
Feel used, patriots? You should. I for one have no use for people like John Brownlee who has clearly demonstrated he hasn’t the experience or qualifications to be the Republican nominee for Attorney General. Ken Cuccinelli is the better choice, by far.
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