Nevins, Joseph

Joseph Nevins is an associate professor of geography at Vassar College. Among his books are Dying to Live: A Story of U.S. Immigration in an Age of Global Apartheid, and Operation Gatekeeper and Beyond: The War on "Illegals" and the Remaking of the U.S. Mexico Boundary.

Meg Whitman Reaps What Pete Wilson Sowed

By Joseph Nevins

The controversy surrounding California Republican gubernatorial nominee Meg Whitman’s employment of Nicky Diaz Santillan, an unauthorized immigrant housekeeper, is the latest in what has become a staple of U.S. politics. Since the early 1990s, hardly a political season has gone by without the “outing” of a high-level candidate or nominee for privately employing the very “illegals” they publicly decry. And if one individual deserves credit for creating the climate that makes such exposés common and effective, it is Whitman’s own campaign manager, former California governor Pete Wilson.