In recent weeks, a good chunk of the American press corps appears to have just discovered the nightmare we’ve known about in Virginia for ages – that being former State Senator, Attorney General, and 2013 Virginia GOP nominee for governor Ken Cuccinelli. The press corps is also discovering that Cuccinelli – who in recent days and weeks has made bizarre, unAmerican comments about the Statue of Liberty, about legal immigrants, etc. – has been like this for ages. For instance, see this morning’s CNN story about how Cuccinelli, now the acting director of US Citizenship and Immigration Services, “was a founding member of a group more than a decade ago that described undocumented immigrants as ‘foreign invaders’ responsible for “serious infectious diseases, drug running, gang violence, human trafficking, terrorism.'”
The group, State Legislators for Legal Immigration, was established in 2007, when an immigration revamp was being hotly debated in Congress. Its founding principle was that undocumented immigration represented an invasion of the United States on par with foreign invasion that should justify invoking war powers under the Constitution — extreme rhetoric Cuccinelli has continued to use in recent years, and that has been adopted by President Donald Trump and other Republicans.
On that same topic, recall that in October 2018, Cuccinelli talked to Breitbart “News” (of course!), claiming that:
“We’ve been being invaded for a long time so the border states clearly qualify here to utilize this [war] power themselves…And because [the states are] acting under war powers, there’s no due process…Literally, you don’t have to keep them, no catch-and-release, no nothing. You just point them back across the river and let them swim for it...When someone comes across your border without your permission, it’s an invasion. Their purpose here is to violate the border, to violate our sovereignty for their own purposes. That’s an invasion. “
Totally nuts. But yeah, that’s our “Cooch” for ya. And again, this goes back many, many years. Don’t believe it? For some more background on Cuccinelli’s craziness and extremism, see below for a few video “blasts from the past” showing him in action. There are many more videos out there, but these are a few “highlights” to give you a flavor of what we’re dealing with here. And yes, Trump really does select the “best people” (translation: WORST people) for his administration.
- First, check out Cuccinelli in August 2017 telling Symone Sanders to “shut up.”
- This one’s from the 2016 Republican national convention, at which Cuccinelli was a delegate for the odious/extreme Ted Cruz. Here’s Cuccinelli, pushing for a roll-call vote.
- Here’s Cuccinelli in 2015 trying, absurdly, to explain why adding the word “too” to the phrase “Black Lives Matter” would clear up supposed confusion about the phrase. According to Cuccinelli, “I don’t think every American hears it that way; they hear…we have this political motivation that we’re separating out this one category of Americans and saying they matter more than everybody else.” In response, Bakari Sellers notes the obvious, that the word “too” is implicit, and that the whole point is “we’re saying stop killing us.”
- Of COURSE Cuccinelli bought into the racist “birther” crap about Barack Obama. Here’s “the Cooch” back in 2010, when he was Attorney General (I know, horrifying), musing about how Obama supposedly wasn’t an American, so any law he signs would potentially be illegitimate. According to Cuccinelli, “the speculation is Kenya…that doesn’t seem beyond the realm of possibility.” Racist much?
- Here’s climate-science-denier Cuccinelli, back in May 2010, attempting to defend his outrageous witch hunt against Professor and leading climate scientist Michael Mann. According to Cuccinelli, Mann’s “position on some of this is one that I question.” In other words, Cuccinelli admits, unabashedly, that he’s a climate science denier. Also note that, in the end, Cuccinelli “tried and failed to obtain a civil subpoena to gain access to Mann’s work papers to scrutinize his use of grants.” For further background on this story, see Science under Attack: Legal Harassment of Climate Scientist Michael Mann, which explains that, “Beginning in April 2010, Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli engaged in a campaign of harassment against climate scientist Michael Mann through a groundless, intrusive investigation of his work at the University of Virginia between 1999 and 2005.” And see this March 2013 Washington Post article, which quotes Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse, a leader on combating the climate crisis, stating: “In 2010, Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli used his powers of office to harass former University of Virginia climatologist Michael Mann and 39 other climate scientists and staff. As a U-Va. grad, I am proud that the university fought back against this political attack on science and on academic freedom.”
- Back in 2009, Cuccinelli talked about how he was considering not giving his child a Social Security number because “it is being used to track you.” Cuccinelli or Kookinelli? You decide.
- How extreme is Ken Cuccinelli? Here’s an ad from 2007 discussing his efforts to “stop life-saving stem cell research.”
- Cuccinelli talks to his pet wooden elephant “Ron” back in 2007. Very strange…right Ron? LOL
P.S. Also, check this out…Cuccinelli actually proposed legislation to make it a CRIME for reporters to enter someone’s private property “within a week after the owner’s family ‘suffered a substantial personal, physical, mental, or emotional loss, injury or trauma.'” Note that the bill was “unable to get even one member of the committee to go along with his proposal, which was denounced by Sen. Henry Marsh (D-Richmond) as a ‘gratuitous, wholesale attack on the press.'” Also, the “committee’s counsel declared the bill ‘unconstitutional’.”