Anti-Immigrant Official With Ties To Hate Group Has Been Advising Mitt Romney On Immigration Policy

Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach, who drafted Arizona and Alabama’s harmful immigration laws and has ties to a hate group, told ThinkProgress on Tuesday that he has been helping to advise Mitt Romney on immigration policy. He started serving as an unpaid adviser at the beginning of the year before he endorsed the former Massachusetts governor, according to the Associated Press.

And as the Romney campaign swept from South Carolina, where state officials are defending a harmful immigration law, into Florida and onto Nevada, which have larger Latino communities, Kobach insisted in an interview that Romney has not changed his tone on immigration policy:

No, he’s been very clear that he favors attrition through enforcement and is opposed to amnesty. […] To say that one talks about his position in favor of legal immigration…one can call it a change in tone, but it’s not in any way different with what he said about addressing illegal immigration.

“Enforcement through attrition” has the same result as self-deportation, Kobach said, and is one of the goals of the extreme state laws. And as it turns out, the backbone for Romney’s immigration policy — forcing immigrants to “self-deport” — began as a joke.