Washington Post: ‘Gillespie in a tight spot on immigration in Trump era’
“With about three weeks to go before Virginia Republicans pick their nominee for governor, front-runner Ed Gillespie is engaged in an awkward two-step as he tries to appeal to Donald Trump voters as well as more mainstream ‘big tent’ Republicans.
“But even there, Gillespie hedges — his lobbying firm earned more than $1 million helping Tyson Foods with matters including “amnesty proposals” and criminal charges related to illegal-immigrant employees. Gillespie takes pains to criticize Democrats inclined to shield undocumented immigrants from deportation, not the immigrants themselves.
“Tyson paid Gillespie’s firm more than $1.1 million from 2001 to 2007 to lobby Bush’s White House, the Senate and the House on a range of issues, according to federal lobbying disclosures. Gillespie was listed as a Tyson lobbyist for several of those years. He was registered to handle issues that included ‘amnesty proposals,’ ‘immigration reform,’ ‘country of origin labeling,’ and ‘labor and workforce issues,’ according to those forms.
“Immigration is particularly tricky for Gillespie, given his advocacy in 2013 for a bipartisan immigration bill and work that his lobbying firm did years earlier for Tyson Foods.
“Asked in a recent TV interview whether he would welcome Trump’s help on the trail, Gillespie looked cornered. ‘Obviously, help from President Trump, Vice President Pence — I’m happy to have all the help I can get,’ he said.
“In 2013, Gillespie pushed for the ‘Gang of Eight’ bill, which called for tighter border security but also a pathway to citizenship for 12 million undocumented immigrants already in the country. Gillespie says he never supported giving citizenship to immigrants, only a pathway to legal status. On television at the time, Gillespie said the measure still needed to be ‘perfected,’ but he pitched it as a good compromise.”
Washington Post: In Va. governor’s race, Gillespie in a tight spot on immigration in Trump era
By Laura Vozzella
RICHMOND — With about three weeks to go before Virginia Republicans pick their nominee for governor, front-runner Ed Gillespie is engaged in an awkward two-step as he tries to appeal to Donald Trump voters as well as more mainstream “big tent” Republicans.
In TV ads, Gillespie sells himself as a twofer — a seasoned government hand and an advocate for change, a Washington insider itching to go to bat for the average Joe.
In Facebook ads targeted to the kinds of voters who swept Trump into the White House, the Republican strikes a harder tone, with images of federal immigration agents taking someone away in handcuffs, a massive border wall and piles of driver’s licenses presumably issued to undocumented immigrants. … Continued here.