Media Matters Action Network

Maryland Delegate Uses Anti-Immigrant Language To Describe Anti-Rat Trafficking Bill

January 20, 2012 5:25 pm ET by Salvatore Colleluori

Comparing immigrants to vermin seems to be a trend in the GOP. Last week, while discussing a non-existent provision of Wildlife Protection Act of 2010 that he claimed would allow Washington, D.C.'s rats to be transported Virginia, Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli (R-VA) made a thinly veiled connection between rats and immigrants.

This week, Maryland Delegate Pat McDonough (R) — a known anti-immigrant hardliner who once called for preventing undocumented immigrants from entering government buildings — reportedly held a news conference to say that he would be introducing a bill to stop relocation of rats to Maryland. However, McDonough took things a step further than Cuccinelli, issuing an accompanying press release full of loaded anti-immigrant language. "We must protect our borders," it said. Rats who have "crossed the border into Maryland must be made illegal because they can produce large numbers of anchor babies." The Washington Examiner reported:

"This insane law obviously places Maryland and Virginia at risk for an invasion of out-of-state rodents," the release said. "We must protect our borders."

Even a temporary flow of rats into Maryland, McDonough warned, could have enduring consequences. 

"The rats multiply at astronomical rates and the rodents who have crossed the border into Maryland must be made illegal because they can produce large numbers of anchor babies," McDonough's release said.

According to the Lutherville-Timonium Patch, McDonough said that he's "protecting the borders again, this time from illegal rats." Unfortunately, it seems to be a disturbing new trend that the Wildlife Protection Act is being used as a vehicle for politicans looking for an excuse to express their distaste for immigrants.

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