You gotta give Meg Whitman credit for sitting down in the studio Wednesday with Calbuzz’s favorite Neanderthal radio yakkers – John Kobylt and Ken Chiampou of KFI-AM in LA – and trying to explain all the contradictions in her positions on immigration and climate change. She couldn’t of course, and J&K – whose web site screamed “Nutmeg in Studio”– were down her throat, in her face and on her case for 30 sizzling minutes.
What they did that few have been able to do is push Meg into answering some simple questions like: Are you for a path to citizenship for illegal immigrants?
Why is this much of a question? Well, first you have to go back to October 28, 2009, when Meg was filmed at the Mexican border – a visit she often brags about – saying “Can we get a fair program where people stand at the back of the line, they pay a fine?” (According to the San Diego Union Tribune Whitman’s sentence concluded “. . . they pay a fine, they do some things that would ultimately allow a path to legalization?”)
But on the radio Wednesday, her answer was: “I am not for a path to citizenship.” When J&K argued (wrongly we believe) that millions of jobs held by illegal aliens should go to Americans, Meg’s response: “I agree with that.” And she flatly agreed with the notion that no one should get citizenship unless they leave the country and apply through the process.
If there was ANY question about her position in her Spanish-language advertising or op-eds, it should now be clear. Meg Whitman is flatly opposed to allowing immigrants here without proper documentation to become U.S. citizens.
She said she’d use the eVerify system to hold employers accountable for hiring illegal immigrants, but only after eVerify is working better than its current 90% accuracy rate. Which caused J&K to go batshit!
Over and over again, Meg would start a sentence: So, here’s what I would do . . . So, this is what I think, So what I have said . . . So, So, So, So . . . AARRGGHHHHHH! Of course J&K cut her off about 90% of the time, confronting her from the right – getting her to agree, for example, that she would “make sure” Americans get those jobs that illegal immigrants are taking away from our out-of-work citizens. (As if those unemployed citizens would EVER take those vital service jobs that undocumented workers do for our society. See “A Day Without a Mexican.” )
J&K also jammed Meg for saying she’s opposed to the Arizona stop-for-papers immigration law but that she’d let it stand for Arizona. Why shouldn’t California have a law just like Arizona’s?, they wanted to know. What’s wrong with it? (Something about different geography was all they could get.)
How could she be saying she wants Latino children to have the opportunity to become doctors and lawyers when she doesn’t want them all – i.e. including illegals – to be able to go to state schools?
And then they came to Prop. 23 – the measure that would suspend California’s pioneering climate chance change law. As Calbuzz predicted, Whitman suggested that she will likely vote ‘No” on Prop. 23, even though she has called the measure it would suspend a “job killer.”
Whitman is trying to say she would suspend the law for a year, but when pressed by J&K about the one-year suspension, she was quick to note that it could be suspended for three years. And in an interview earlier this year with the Ventura County Star, Whitman suggested she would jettison the law altogether. The Brown campaign was on this like stink on a skunk.
We suppose eMeg’s people sent her onto J&K to try to do some damage control with their right-wing audience, but judging from the listeners we heard right after her appearance, we’re not sure it worked. She was called a “two-faced lying weasel,” “wishy-washy . . . bought her way into the election,” and an “absolute two-faced liar.”
So, what we have to say about that is . . .The reason these issues matter is because: 1) Whitman is desperate to win a third or more of Latino voters but her stand today seriously endangers that effort IF Latino voters hear what she said today — which will depend on whether Jerry Brown and/or his allies drive that message home and 2) Whitman is trying to wiggle her way away from her strategic blunder in the GOP primary where she ripped AB 32 when she didn’t have to and on this issue Brown seems intent on making sure that moderate and independent voters know that Whitman is not on their side on the environment.
Gay blades not out on Prop. 8 ruling: Even though Brown and Whitman are on opposite sides of the gay marriage debate, don’t look for the issue to gain much traction in the campaign for governor.
As a legal matter, Judge Vaughn Walker’s opinion declaring the Proposition 8 ban on same sex marriage unconstitutional re-ignites the controversy in California, and across the nation. At first glance, with the decision headed for a likely long appeals process, there is no immediate political venue for the controversy to play out in a major way in the 2010 state campaigns.
If there is any advantage to be gained, it would be modest, and likely accrue to Brown’s benefit. As Attorney General, he refused to defend Prop. 8, both before the state Supreme Court and before U.S. District Judge Walker, and might get a small boost from the Democratic base among liberals and gay rights advocates in an election in which turnout will be crucial.
Whitman has consistently said she is opposed to gay marriage, and has quietly expressed support for Prop. 8, but is unlikely to gin up much excitement among evangelicals and other Republican social conservatives for her understated views, particularly given her pro-choice position on abortion, and her effort to run hard to the center in the general election.
It was clear from the bland statements issued by both candidates after Wednesday’s ruling that neither side sees vast political opportunity, at least for now.
Brown’s campaign flack referred questions about his reaction to the attorney general’s office, which released this brief comment from the AG:
In striking down Proposition 8, Judge Walker came to the same conclusion I did when I declined to defend it: Proposition 8 violates the equal protection guarantee of the Fourteenth Amendment of the United States Constitution by taking away the right of same-sex couples to marry, without a sufficient governmental interest.
Candidate Krusty was somewhat livelier on Twitter:
It’s official! Great News for California! California gay marriage ban overturned!
Then wife Anne tweeted:
I’m proud my husband worked so hard to protect marriage for others, even though it took him 15 years to pop the question to me 🙂
eMeg’s comment, made by Darrel Ng, Team Whitman’s Third Mate Under Assistant Vice President Deputy Flack for Issues the Volcanic Sarah Pompei Doesn’t Want to Deal With:
Meg supported Proposition 8 and believes marriage is between a man and a woman. Meg also strongly supports California’s civil union laws. Today’s ruling is the first step in a process that will continue.
“The first step in a process that will continue?”
Sort of like ordering breakfast, or brushing your teeth, or driving on the freeway or . . . everything… How cosmic of you, Darrel!
P.S. Over in the Senate race, where the issue might prove more salient, Babs and Hurricane Carly are also split.