Governor Tim Kaine said yesterday he would sign some of the immigration enforcement laws sponsored by Republican legislators in the Virginia General Assembly.

Some immigration-related bills sponsored by Republican Shenandoah Valley lawmakers may have the support of Gov. Timothy M. Kaine if they get through the General Assembly.

During a wide-ranging discussion on Monday in Harrisonburg, the Democratic governor said he could support immigration laws if they deal with people who commit crimes.

Specifically, the Governor indicated support for:

Sen. Mark Obenshain’s SB782

Provides that it is cause for disciplinary action by any regulatory board established pursuant to Title 54.1 against a regulant if such regulant has been convicted of a state or federal law prohibiting the employment of persons who are not legally eligible to be employed in the United States.

Del. Todd Gilbert’s HB929

Adds a presumption, subject to rebuttal, against admitting to bail any person who commits a felony or any violation of ยง 18.2-266(DUI) and is identified as being in the United States unlawfully and requires judicial officers prior to a bail hearing, to the extent feasible, to verify whether a person is a citizen or is otherwise lawfully present in the United States.

Granted, the Obenshain bill is the most significant and is limited by some major contingencies, but this is a start and indicates a modicum of intellectual honesty by our Democratic Governor.

Government sanction of illegal hiring practices is a slap in the face to Virginia’s blue collar workers, presumably key members of the Democratic constituency. The official policy of winking at DUI and other motor vehicle violations by illegals is blatantly unfair to legal residents of the commonwealth and needs to be ended. The Governor’s positive signals on these bills indicate he is truly taking a common sense approach to the illegal immigration problem in Virginia.