Meg Whitman: Feds Shouldn’t Be Telling Arizona What To Do, Opposes Path To Legalization

Meg Whitman

Meg Whitman

Last week, Southern California conservative radio hosts John and Ken grilled gubernatorial candidate Meg Whitman (R-CA) on the two conflicting messages she is sending to voters on immigration in English and in Spanish. To begin with, the hosts pointed out that Whitman has over 30 billboards in Latino-heavy areas of the state proclaiming “No to Proposition 187 and no to SB-1070″ in Spanish. However, as Wonk Room reported recently, Whitman recently told a California English-language radio station that the “Arizona [immigration] law should stand for Arizona” and that she opposes implementing SB-1070 in California simply because the state is bigger.

Whitman reiterated yesterday that the federal government shouldn’t be telling Arizona what to do:

HOST: “The Arizona law should stand for Arizona,” but in the Spanish commercial you said that you oppose the Arizona law. Which is it?

WHITMAN: I oppose the Arizona law — have from the beginning. […]

HOST: Why wouldn’t the Arizona law work because we have bigger geography? […] It’s the opposite of what you said in the Spanish language commercial. You said clearly no on the Arizona law and you said clearly in English that you were fine with the Arizona law in Arizona.

WHITMAN: That’s not true. What I said is states’ rights have to preside here and that I didn’t think it was right for the federal government to be telling Arizona what to do. […]

After probing Whitman on her confusing stance on SB-1070 John and Ken pursued the conflicting positions she’s presented in English and Spanish on a path to legalization for undocumented immigrants. When Whitman was running against Republican Steve Poizner in a tough primary, she repeatedly described a path to legalization as “amnesty.” However, in a Spanish-language editorial, she indicated that she and her opponent, Jerry Brown (D), share an almost identical immigration platform and that both oppose granting a path to legalization without requiring undocumented immigrants to pay fines or learn English. Furthermore, last October, before immigration heated up, Whitman favored a “program in which people would go to the end of the line, pay a fine and do things that would allow for a path to legalization.” John and Ken pushed Whitman to unequivocally admit that she does not support legalization under any circumstances:

HOST: In the Steve Poizner ad you said ‘path to citizenship’ is amnesty, here, you’re saying a path to citizenship is not amnesty…you said that in Spanish.

WHITMAN: A blanket path to amnesty, what Reagan did, is amnesty. When there’s no penalties. And a path to citizenship is amnesty too. I’m not for either of those. […] I am not for a path to citizenship. You know that.

HOST: You are not for a path to citizenship?

WHITMAN: Correct.

HOST: Well, that’s not what you say here. That’s not what it says in your Spanish editorial. [Silence] […] No illegal alien is going to get any kind of citizenship unless they leave the country and apply through the process, is that true?


Watch it:

andreaWhitman appears to have finally given some definitive answers on her tough immigration position in English. However, it’s doubtful she’ll start posting giant billboards in Spanish promoting her support for Arizona and writing Spanish-language editorials about her opposition to a path to legalization under any circumstances.

Andrea Christina Nill

Reposted with permission from The Wonk Room.


  1. dusty says

    Elaine, quit looking for salvation and quit trusting in corporations and corporate leaders as something good for America. A government run by business people like a business and for business has the hall marks of fascism. We need people who serve the people of the country, not the narrow interests of the rich, and therefore must have experience in serving people as human beings and not as a market to be profited from. Government is broader than the business motive and the ends are for the good of the commonweal, not the owners or share holders. Part of the problem we are having as a society is that the business world, using their money, hires tons of lobbyists to secure their narrow interest to the detriment of the public. Think BP, Exxon, and so many other interests that use their influence to weaken standards established to protect the public trust.

  2. Nate says

    If Ca. fooloshly elects this corporate shill , then they pretty much deserve the drubbing she’ll give them .

    More tax cuts for billionairs and higher taxes for working people , nothing atall agaist the teeming hords of illegals .

    This used to be a nice place to live , not so much these days but blue collar schmoes like me , we’re stuck , not enough $ to move away .

    • Elaine says

      She may be California’s salvation. Running a state is a lot like running a business & she ran one of the best business in the world. Someone has got to get California back on its feet after being beat to death by over zealous environmentalists & not that I think she would stop working on having a good environment I do not think she will spend money for it over helping with more important matters. I do not know this & I do not know if it is true that she is friends with Van Jones. That’s what I heard but I just can’t see her working with him unless she is a Progressive Republican.

    • dusty says

      Where are the “teeming hoards/hords” of illegals? I live in LA, close to downtown, and travel in various neighborhoods and I don’t see any “teeming hoards.” I suspect schmoes in the US have better choices than the poor of other countries where ever they are in the world.

      Words like “teeming hoards” smack of prejudice which I don’t believe is meant by Nate but one has to remember the history and context of words used: remember that at one time Asian immigrants were called “teeming hoards” and/or “the yellow peril” must as Italians were referred to in very derogatory ways etc, now it is again being used in a way that sounds like it has ethnic or national connotations.

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