Missouri AG vows to pursue those who hire undocumented workers

By Chris Rizo | Apr 22, 2008

Attorney General Jay Nixon

Gov. Matt Blunt

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (Legal Newsline)-Missouri Attorney General Jay Nixon vowed Tuesday to continue pursuing companies that hire illegal immigrants in his remaining days as attorney general, and afterwards if he is elected governor of the Show Me State.

Speaking at a state Capitol union rally, Nixon criticized Republican Gov. Matt Blunt for not providing the attorney general's office with help to go after recalcitrant employers.

Nixon also told the crowd that he is the only state attorney general in the nation to have brought criminal charges against employers who have hired illegal immigrants and "benefited off their backs."

The presumptive Democratic nominee in the race for Missouri governor, Nixon also told union members gathered that their ranks will grow after he is elected governor.

"In just a few short years, the number of brothers and sisters we have carrying union cards in the state of Missouri is going to be up, not going down," Nixon told members of the Missouri State Building and Construction Trades Council.

Union members were rallying at the Capitol to urge state lawmakers to approve legislation to punish employers who hire undocumented workers.

Responding to Nixon's comments, Blunt spokesman Rich Chrismer said the attorney general's assertion that the governor has done little to help fight illegal immigration is false.

"Governor Blunt has achieved more to fight illegal immigration in less than a year with his tough directives than Jay Nixon has done during his entire career as attorney general," Chrismer said.

He said governor's directives, for example, have led to the detention of 235 illegal immigrants, and Blunt has also increased funding for state law enforcement, ousted a state contractor who hired illegal immigrants and has called on the Legislature to enact laws to fight illegal immigration.

"Jay Nixon can make as many false statements as he would like to his union boss supporters, but he cannot hide from his own record of ignoring the problem of illegal immigration," Chrismer said.

From Legal Newsline: Reach reporter Chris Rizo by e-mail at chrisrizo@legalnewsline.com.

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