(CNSNews.com) -- Despite repeated requests for comment, Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe, a Democrat, has so far remained silent on the federal government’s quiet transfer of an unknown number of illegal immigrant children from the Texas border to Prince William County in Virginia last week, a move that was highly criticized by local government officials and Virginia residents, CNSNews.com reported.
But McAuliffe has not always been quiet on the issues of illegal immigration and border security. In a 2007 radio interview, the former chairman of the Democratic National Committee demanded the federal government “shut the borders down.”
“I don’t care if you’re a Democrat or a Republican, we all agree you’ve got to shut the borders down,” McAuliffe said during the California public radio interview, reported Politico.
“People who are coming into this nation, taking our jobs,” he added.
For those undocumented aliens already living in the United States, McAuliffe said at the time that there should be “something for the people who have been here for years and have paid taxes. You know, we’re for the people who have been in this nation who have been paying taxes and raising their family.”
“But for the people who have not been here,” McAuliffe continued, “who have been here illegally and have taken advantage of the situation, we need to have a plan to get them back to the countries they came from, and more importantly, we have got to shut these borders down.”
During his 2013 campaign for Virginia governor, McAuliffe shifted his strong border security stance to a more softened defense against what he called “inflammatory and offensive rhetoric” against illegal immigration from his then-opponent, Republican candidate Ken Cuccinelli.
But according to Josh Schwerin, McAuliffe’s campaign press secretary at the time, McAuliffe still touted the need for more border security and only supported a pathway to citizenship for “undocumented families who are working hard for the American Dream.”
Border security has been called into question in recent weeks as a flood of more than 200,000 illegal aliens have been apprehended at the Southwest U.S. border since October, including more than 57,000 unaccompanied children, mostly from Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador and Mexico. While some Democratic lawmakers continue to claim that the border is secure, many Republicans argue that the huge wave of illegal immigrants crossing into the United States at a rate of more than 1,000 per day suggests otherwise.
After repeatedly demanding that the federal government increase border security, Texas Governor Rick Perry, a Republican, has made plans to deploy around 1,000 members of the Texas National Guard to help stem the tide in the state’s Rio Grande Valley Sector, the Washington Post reported Monday.
Other Republican and Democratic governors across the country have criticized the Obama administration’s proposed, and sometimes successful, transfer of illegal alien children to their states, including Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer (R), Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley (D) and Nebraska Gov. Dave Heineman (R).
During a meeting of the National Governors Association last week, Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper (D), Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker (R), New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R) and Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad (R) also protested the administration’s plan to send thousands of illegal alien minors to live with family members across the country without first verifying their family members’ immigration statuses, Fox News reported.
McAuliffe’s office did not respond to CNSNews.com’s request for comment.