Kilgore’s illegal alien income exposed.

Kudos to Lowell Feld at Raising Kaine for exposing Jerry Kilgore’s hypocrisy on immigration:

Jerry Kilgore loves bashing illegal immigrants when it’s politically expedient, but it turns out that at least one of his major donors — North Carolina-based pork processor Smithfield Foods, which has donated $25,000 to Jerry Kilgore [and] $15,000 to the Virginia Republicans’ Dominion Leadership Trust PAC…is an employer, exploiter and horrifying abuser of “sizeable” numbers of illegal immigrants.

It’s true — Smithfield has been convicted of abusive work practices for, among other things, hiring illegal immigrants and then threatening to report them to the INS (or ICE, as it’s now known) in order to keep them requesting pay raises.

Just to get this straight: Smithfield increases their profits by hiring illegal aliens and paying them badly, and uses a chunk of those profits to support Jerry Kilgore’s candidacy, which is largely based on demanding a crackdown on illegal aliens and those businesses who profit from them.

Eye. Mote. Plank.

Update: Chad Dotson points out that Tim Kaine has accepted $10k from Smithfield. Though I mind this less (Kaine’s candidacy isn’t premised on cracking down on businesses that benefit from undocumented workers, while Kilgore has had a field day with the issue), it’s still a crap company that treats their workers badly. I figure both guys should return their money. Kilgore for being a hypocrite and Kaine because, as a Democrat, he should be concerned with the welfare of these individuals.

30 thoughts on “Kilgore’s illegal alien income exposed.”

  1. Because someone donates to your campaign, you thus know everything that entity is doing and you support them in that. Yeah… that makes sense…

    Of course not, but once you find out, you should return the money if it’s from a disreputable source. In Kilgore’s case, he’s received a great deal of money from a large number of disreputable sources — Koch “97 Felony Counts” Industries, Swift Boat money man Bob Perry, “Virginia is New York’s Dumping Ground” Waste Manaagement, anti-union Alpha Natural ResourcesInc., water-polluter Rapoca Energy, and Pat “Anti-Muslim Bigot and Advocate of Assassination” Robertson. Has Kilgore disowned any of the companies or individuals? Nope. And that’s exactly what makes it a perfectly legitimate campaign issue. By the way, I’m sure if Tim Kaine had received contributions from a corrupt or extreme left wing source, the Howell/Kilgore campaign would be all over him like a cheap suit.

  2. Actually, Hans, campaigns generally research larger contributions prior to accepting them for this very reason. It’s one thing to take $200 from an ex-felon. It’s another to take $25,000 from a corporation with a well-documented history of violating the laws that are the centerpiece of the campaign in question.

  3. Waldo is absolutely right. Look at some of Kilgore’s top donors: John Gregory of King Pharmaceuticals ($250,000), Joseph Gregory of King “Meth” Pharmaceuticals ($150,000), Pat “Anti-Muslim Bigot and Advocate of Assassination” Robertson ($47,500), Koch “97 Felony Counts” Industries ($35,500), and Bob “Swift Boats” Perry ($15,000). Would you accept money from any of these donors? I know I wouldn’t!

    Regardless, these donations say an awful lot about Jerry Kilgore’s character, just as his refusal to answer a “hypothetical” question about abortion tells you something significant. Unfortunately for his diehard Republican backers, none of it is good…

  4. Thanks for the link, Waldo. I do take exception with your characterization of Kilgore as a hypocrite, without saddling Kaine with the same label. For the last week or so, Kaine has told everyone who would listen that he was against public benefits for companies that hire illegal aliens?

    But he’s not a hypocrite, because Kilgore has said it more often, or more loudly? I’m not sure that follows.

    If it’s bad for one, it’s bad for both, from my view.

    Anyway, keep up the good work over here. It’s good work for the wrong team, but good work nonetheless. :)

  5. For the last week or so, Kaine has told everyone who would listen that he was against public benefits for companies that hire illegal aliens?

    I have no idea if Smithfield gets public benefits or not and, if so, what they’d be. I’m not even really sure of how to figure that out.

    You’ve characterized the race as guy who is strongly opposed to illegal immigration versus guy who has no problem with illegal immigration. If that characterization is true (on my part and yours :), then Kilgore would be guilty of hypocrisy here, while Kaine would just be guilty of taking money from a lousy company.

  6. I agree, Kaine should return the money from Smithfield Foods. This company is really, really bad news. Having said that, I would point out that this “lousy company” has given 84% ($92,333) of its political contributions to Republicans for 2005, and 71% ($287,243) for “all years.” Smithfield has not given Tim Kaine any money in 2005, although it did give him $10,000 at the end of 2004. I would also point out that the issue I raised is illegal immigration, and the bottom line is that Kilgore rails against it yet takes large sums of money from a company that practices it (and exploits the workers). That is incredible hypocrisy on Kilgore’s part, on top of the fact that Kilgore has taken 5 times as much money as Kaine from this “lousy company.”

  7. It would seem that the Kaine supporters would know how to use Google, but apparently either they don’t…..Or, could it just be that they don’t expect the voting populace to know how to use Google.

    My question is, which is worse?

  8. 1) I want Kaine to win. 2) I find Smithfield Foods to be an awful company in just about every way. 3) I believe in the rights of human beings to not be exploited, abused, etc., even if they’re violating immigration laws.

  9. I’m sorry Waldo, but if that’s the case, why did it take a connection to the Kilgore campaign to draw out a post from you regarding Smithfield?
    We all know by now that the Kaine contribution occured last year. you have had a lot of time to link it to oppression of the underpriveledged class. Why did you wait ’til now to attempt to distance your guy from it?

  10. xpost at raisingkaine

    It is of note is that Smithfield gave identical gifts of $10k to both Kaine and Kilgore on 12/30/04. That was 3 months before Kaine even announced he was running for Governor.

    Smithfield gave Kilgore $25k and 6 weeks later Kilgore comes out with his new hallmark issue.
    Jerry Kilgore is basing his campaign on this “nativist” stuff. “Blatant hypocrisy” is too kind a term.

    It’s all grandstanding, paranoia and stupidity. A comprehensive review of immigration law at the NATIONAL level is what’s necessary. After Jerry Kilgore’s dim-witted performance at Tuesday’s debate, I don’t think he could comprehensively review a dinner menu.

  11. I’m sorry Waldo, but if that’s the case, why did it take a connection to the Kilgore campaign to draw out a post from you regarding Smithfield?

    Because what the hell do I know about Smithfield?

  12. why did it take a connection to the Kilgore campaign to draw out a post from you regarding Smithfield?

    Ummm…. because he’s a Republican? No, no… that CAN’T be it. That would be so contrary to Waldo’s claim that politics is secondary to everything else.

  13. “I figure both guys should return their money. Kilgore for being a hypocrite and Kaine because, as a Democrat, he should be concerned with the welfare of these individuals.”

    That’d be a way to put Kilgore on the defensive, that’s for sure.

  14. Call me dense, but I still don’t get why taking money from a company that disagrees with what you stand for is a bad thing. Waldo and I disagree on a lot of things, but if I was running a campaign, I’d take money from him. It’s his own fault if he gives me money to help get me elected and he knows that I stand for the polar opposite of things that he stands for. It’s not Jerry Kilgore’s fault that a company that makes money from illegal immigrant workers is stupid enough to give to a candidate that is in favor of shutting that kind of thing down.

    Hey, if the Communists would have donated to the US Defense budget during the Cold War, do you think the US shoulda taken it?

  15. Hans: I don’t agree with you, but I’ve got to congratulate you because that’s the FIRST intelligent argument I’ve heard from your side since I raised this issue. I’m not kidding…you’ve raised a legitimate issue here, as opposed to 99% of your brethren who have simply gone ad hominem or tried other logical fallacies (distract from core argument, focus on one or two sub-points and make a big deal of them, argue that someone else did it too so it doesn’t matter, etc.).

    To answer your last question: yes, if the Soviets had offered to fund our defense budget during the Cold War, I would have gladly taken the money and kept doing exactly what we were doing. That is, as long as there were no strings attached. Unfortunately, that is often the case with gifts, and I’m sure it would have been in the case of the Soviets (as in, we’ll fund your defense budget if you convert to Communism). In the case of contributions to political candidates, that’s exactly what I worry about — “gifts come with strings attached.” So how does Kilgore’s immigrant bashing square with his acceptance of money from a company that is a major employer of illegal immigrants? Is he planning on simply “demagoguing” this issue during the campaign, then doing ABSOLUTELY NOTHING about illegal immigration if he’s ever elected governor (which he won’t be, of course)? That’s what I want to know.

  16. Well, the great thing about VA governors not succeeding themselves means that once Kilgore gets elected, he won’t have any motivation to all of a sudden go soft on illegal immigration to encourage Smithfield to donate to his reelection campaign.

    I guess I’m a bit biased on this issue: I had some excellent Smithfield bacon bits in my omlette this morning! *grin*

  17. On a somewhat unrelated issue… As I noted on Bacon’s Reb, at all the Kilgore trainings, they kept talking about how playing up the immigrant theme would be a great “white male” turnout motivator, even though the issue barely affects most parts of the Commonwealth other than NOVA. The excited way they talked about it didn’t quite match the “we’re concerned about breaking the law” theme. I’m not sure everyone at the training was all that impressed with the overtones.

    Later, the Kilgore’s Latino outreach lead has resigned in disgust and joined Kaine. I’m sure there’s no connection.

  18. um… hey Jimmy. That’s an interesting story about Kilgore’s Latino outreach coordinator. I’d be interested in getting in touch with that individual. Do you have a name?

  19. Josh: this is mostly inside baseball (inside the Kilgore camp), but the position vacated was the chair of Kilgore’s Hispanic Steering Comittee. Ask the Kilgore campaign to comment and see what you find.

  20. In other words, no, Jimmy doesn’t have a name because he made it all up. but it sure sounded good before you got called on it.

  21. Believe what you will. Or, go looking and find out I’m right.

    Anyone that was at a Kilgore statewide training knows I’m telling the truth.

  22. Jimmy, I’ll look into it. And I for one do absolutely believe you. I can’t imagine an hispanic voter supporting Jerry Kilgore. Not only is he obviously using hispanics as vote-getting scapegoates for this election, but his “pro-life” position amounts to an “hypothetical” hypocrisy.

    No wonder he wants to gut education. The more people know about Kilgore, the less likely they are to vote for him.

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