Romney: I haven't met with immigration adviser Kobach
September 17th, 2012
05:47 PM ET
9 years ago

Romney: I haven't met with immigration adviser Kobach

Washington (CNN) - Mitt Romney told an interviewer Monday that he has never met with Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach, the architect of tough immigration laws in Alabama and Arizona who says he has been counseling Romney for years.

Univision America Radio host Helen Aguirre-Ferre asked Romney, who spent Monday making a push for Hispanic voters, if Kobach is advising his campaign on immigration policy.

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Aguirre-Ferre said "there are some Hispanics who are concerned" with Romney's immigration positions, specifically his promise to veto the DREAM Act as well as Kobach's involvement in the campaign.

Romney said he has not met with Kobach, whom the campaign has described as an "informal adviser."

"As to the other individual that you mentioned, he may well be part of a policy team," Romney said. "I have not met with him yet. And don't know whether he is or he is not. So, sorry I can't confirm that for you."

That's a far cry from the full-throated praise Romney had for Kobach in January after he endorsed the former Massachusetts governor during the Republican primaries.

"I'm so proud to earn Kris's support," Romney said in a statement announcing the Kobach endorsement. "Kris has been a true leader on securing our borders and stopping the flow of illegal immigration into this country. We need more conservative leaders like Kris willing to stand up for the rule of law."

Asked for clarification, a spokesman for the Romney campaign said Romney and Kobach have, in fact, met before at campaign events - but not in formal policy meetings. The aide said that in Monday's radio interview, Romney was referring to policy meetings, which Kobach does not participate in.

"Mr. Kobach does not participate in formal policy meetings with the governor or the campaign. He contributes informal advice periodically," the spokesman said.

Kobach became a focal point of the campaign last April after a Romney adviser described the immigration hardliner as just a "supporter" of the campaign rather than an "adviser."

The campaign later backtracked and called him an adviser, much to the glee of Obama campaign operatives who have tried to drive a wedge between Romney and Hispanic voters.

As for Kobach, he has not been shy about announcing his ties to senior Romney campaign officials - and the candidate himself. In February, he told The Guardian that he has "advised Romney directly."

Kobach told the National Review in April that he has been providing advice to Romney and his advisers since 2008.

"The governor takes my advice, and does what he wants with it," Kobach told the conservative magazine.

This post has been updated with comment from the Romney campaign.

Filed under: 2012 • Immigration • Mitt Romney
soundoff (45 Responses)
  1. Captain Obvious

    Obama is going to get my vote and Romney is going to get a Pinocchio doll or a pair of flip flops or both.

    September 17, 2012 10:07 pm at 10:07 pm |
  2. enuff

    Another flip flop. Either he knows him or he doesn't. Make up your mind on something...ANYTHING would do right now

    September 17, 2012 10:19 pm at 10:19 pm |
  3. Max


    Who is the LIAR's obvious it's Romney. How can we trust Romney to be our president? He's simply 'GROSS'

    September 17, 2012 10:20 pm at 10:20 pm |
  4. Sheon1

    I met him, but I didn't meet him.
    Romney should have been a boxer, as much as he bobs and weaves.

    September 17, 2012 10:29 pm at 10:29 pm |
  5. MikeH

    Somebody's lying. I wonder who it could be?

    September 17, 2012 10:32 pm at 10:32 pm |
  6. Fourmoreyears

    This guy is a piece of work. Lying is not a problem for him.

    September 17, 2012 10:36 pm at 10:36 pm |
  7. Amazing

    Another example of Romney's "principles" on display. This combined with his comments at the fund raiser shows his true feelings. Obama in 2012!

    September 17, 2012 11:11 pm at 11:11 pm |
  8. nunya

    I live in Kansas. I would avoid being associated with him, too...

    September 17, 2012 11:33 pm at 11:33 pm |
  9. Keep us all on our heels...

    Mitt has so many lies to keep up wth, it was just a matter of time they caught up with him. His only defense is to claim that Obama lies more.. and that is suppose to make us feel better?

    September 18, 2012 02:21 am at 2:21 am |
  10. Glenn Rice

    And, Sarah Palin never met with me.......

    September 18, 2012 04:55 am at 4:55 am |
  11. ATL Guy

    Wow, this guy lies so much that he can't keep his lies straight. He said to the interviewer that he'd never met the dude only to have his campaign come out later on and say that he did in fact meet the dude. It's like a little child afraid of getting in trouble that would impulsively lie to not get in trouble.

    September 18, 2012 07:41 am at 7:41 am |
  12. A not-so-stupid former republican

    Romney is done! Stick a fork in him!

    September 18, 2012 08:18 am at 8:18 am |
  13. Obama2012

    Has he met with Kobach or Not? Which way is it? Telling half-truths like Ryan?

    1/2 truth + 1/2 thru = 1 LYAR! Do the Arythmetcs.

    September 18, 2012 08:22 am at 8:22 am |
  14. Leaning Back and Laughing

    Romney says what he believes his audience wants to hear: "I've got a fantastic advisor on Hispanic affairs!" and "I've never met him".

    And that "candid" video pretty much shows that, huh?

    September 18, 2012 08:27 am at 8:27 am |
  15. FlotsamJetsam

    One issue after another! This has been Romney's undoing this whole campaign where he has continuously on defense.

    Not surprised that Romney trolls go on here and just rant line after line about Obama. There is not much to say about what Romney would do if he were president.

    September 18, 2012 08:38 am at 8:38 am |
  16. Malory Archer

    Well, someone's lying, and given mittens' propensity for lying, my money's on him.

    September 18, 2012 08:39 am at 8:39 am |
  17. chill

    Ah, an Etch-a-Sketch moment.

    September 18, 2012 08:39 am at 8:39 am |

    Willard Romney, a guy you can trust.

    September 18, 2012 08:55 am at 8:55 am |
  19. Donkey Party

    Good news, Romney does have a core. Bad news, it's a nuclear core, and it's in full meltdown mode.

    September 18, 2012 09:26 am at 9:26 am |
  20. Donkey Party

    Rick McDenial – Under the Obama administration, illegal immigration is at record lows, and deportations are at record highs. You see Rick, out here in reality, not in your deluded right-wing sphere of insane ignorance, facts do matter. But keep running around with your hair on fire, it's very entertaining.

    September 18, 2012 09:31 am at 9:31 am |
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