An informed press can be an asset to voters in need of information about their candidates. An uninformed and careless press can do tremendous harm to our democracy in the fast moving world where rumors take on a life of their own. There is an unparalleled haste in news reporting which sometimes tends to override the facts.
The headlines and coverage of major news organizations often seems reduced to blogging. Blogging is not a bad thing, but it is dangerous that, in our era, the lines between blogging and factual reporting is increasingly blurred. At least, it is so in the case of the smear campaign currently being conducted in the media against moderate Republican Meg Whitman.
Most likely, you already believe the story as it’s being circulated. Is there a single news source, including C-Span’s Washington Journal, which is not reporting that Meg Whitman and her husband hired illegal immigrant Nicky Diaz Santillan?
Is it News, or Rumor?
The reason this is news, of course, is that illegal immigration has become a major issue in today’s politics. Meg Whitman opposes illegal immigration, as law-abiding people do. Therefore, Meg Whitman’s political enemies in the Jerry Brown for Governor camp want voters to believe the rumor being circulated about opponent Meg Whitman proves she is a hypocrite.
Is Attorney Gloria Allred Lying?
Gloria Allred is too smart an attorney to engage in outright lying. But if lawyers were not able to bend and present the facts in a way that leads people to faulty conclusions, and without running afoul of the law themselves, then O.J. Simpson would be in jail for murdering his wife and Ron Goldman.
Gloria Allred’s client, the Whitman’s former housekeeper, stands to gain in a lawsuit and the lawyer herself benefits from the publicity she has generated. Furthermore, Allred is a Jerry Brown supporter and has made political contributions to him in the past.
Allred’s Whisper Campaign
Major news organizations are reporting the story without fact checking. Simple fact checking would prove that Meg Whitman is telling the truth when she says she did not know her housekeeper was an illegal immigrant. The “proof” cited by the news media is a letter from the Social Security administration notifying Whitman of a social security account number problem. So far no one has claimed the letter identifies Diaz – Santillan as an illegal immigrant or worker.
Duplicate or Falsified Social Security Numbers
A discrepant or even a duplicate social security account number is not proof that an employee is an illegal immigrant. There are many American born citizens in the U.S. who have dual SSANs and who are not in violation of any laws. Of course, some SSAN’s are false, contrived for the purpose of deceiving others.
Does Nicky Diaz Santillan Tell Lies?
We can’t say for sure but we do know that Meg Whitman released documents obtained when they hired Santillan. The Wall Street Journal reported that Whitman hired Diaz in 2000 through an employment agency and the agency supplied the required hiring documents-Social Security Card, driver’s license, and a federal document attesting under oath that she was a “lawful permanent resident alien.” Clearly, Meg Whitman erred in not strapping Diaz – Santillan into a chair and whipping her into a confession.
Gloria Allred Waves a Letter; the Liberal Press Gasps
It sounds to me that Whitman is being pilloried in the liberal press because of being kind to Nicky Diaz Santillan. In a public display of legal showmanship, Gloria Allred yesterday waved a letter in the air for the benefit of reporters and a separate note the requesting information to Whitman and her husband. On the communications, Whitman’s husband, Griff Harsh, had scribbled a note saying “Nicky, please check this, thanks.”
Meg Whitman Expected to Do What Obama Administration Won’t Do
The redacted letter distributed to the press by Gloria Allred doesn’t tell Meg Whitman and her husband that Santillan is an illegal immigrant. Whitman’s husband, in a scribbled notation, asked Diaz – Santillan to look into the letter.
What was expected of Whitman and spouse at that point? That they put Santillan in a headlock and march her down to the local Immigration Service or Customs Office? The Obama administration doesn’t even do that with hundreds of illegal immigrants every night marching across the Southwestern deserts with bales of illegal drugs carried on their backs.
It appears that Harsh and Whitman were trying to tip Santillan off that she had a problem. Disinterested fact checking would have revealed Gloria Allred’s strategy of presenting the information in a misleading way. Of course, this does not serve Gloria Allred’s purpose, nor Jerry Brown’s, nor Allred’s client’s.
1-800-772-1213: SSA Number Provided for Liberal Press Fact Checking Purposes
A Wall Street Journal article did attempt to check facts with the Social Security Administration. “A Social Security spokeswoman said the agency couldn’t comment,” reported the Wall Street Journal.
Questions to ask of the Social Security Administration are obvious. Is it possible to have a SSAN discrepancy and still be a legal employee? Does the social security administration first notify employers when discrepant social security numbers are reflected by the number database?
Weighty Questions and Climate Change We Can Believe In
Of course, these questions are too weighty for the crack journalists of the national media to ask, especially when they are intent on destroying candidate Meg Whitman. The answer to the first question is “yes” and the answer to the second is “no.” The contrived issue of Meg Whitman’s alleged hiring of an illegal immigrant may or may not have originated with the Jerry Brown campaign. However, since constitutional protections against the presumption of guilt are so often not applied to political “journalism,” can we presume that the Jerry Brown – Gloria Allred campaigns are low-down, dirty, and need to curtail their toxic emissions? That would be climate change you can believe in.