A Mexican President praises Governor Rick Perry for offering in-state tuition to illegal immigrants in Texas. Mitt Romney uses footage of it in a campaign ad. Something wrong with that? Apparently yes--in the eyes of Chuck Todd.
The host of MSNBC's "Daily Rundown" critically quizzed Romney campaign strategist Russ Schriefer over the ad today. Video after the jump.
1. Even if Todd is correct that the use of comments by a foreign leader is "somewhat unprecedented", is there anything wrong about it if the leader is accurately quoted, as is apparently the case here?
2. Is Todd fair in describing Fox as speaking "broken English"? The former Mexican president might not be Bill Buckley, but his syntax seems to be proper if not entirely idiosyncratic English. Todd frets about Romney "alienating Hispanics," but who's doing the insulting here?
CHUCK TODD: Russ, using a former foreign leader in a political ad. That seemed somewhat unprecedented to me.
RUSS SCHRIEFER: He said it. And he was, he praised Governor Perry for the action he did. Governor Perry was the first governor to support and sign into law in-state tuition benefits for illegal immigrants. And this was something in the first debate, in the second debate, he was very proud of and defended. And so this shouldn't be a problem. This is something that Governor Perry has said he's for and should be proud of.
You might have thought that would have ended the matter, but Todd circled back for another crack at it.
TODD: A few minutes ago you talked about, you think that Romney can bring Michigan into play. I agree with that. New Hampshire, some of these other states where Democrats have made significant gains over the last six, eight, ten years. But an ad like that, using somebody speaking broken English. Do you worry about alienating Hispanics and making Colorado harder, making Nevada harder, making New Mexico harder?
SCHRIEFER: No. I think that legal immigrants, people who are here legally and are first-generation, second-generation immigrants, are offended as anybody else that they would have to, that they are subsidizing people who are here illegally. And I think that that's not going to be a problem at all. I think when you see that governors along the border states, with the exception of Governor Perry, oppose this kind of legislation. I think it's quite clear-and they're able to win in their respective states. I think it's going to be very clear that we're going to be able to win this on this.