Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said Wednesday that House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (Va.) was defeated in the GOP primary "by a candidate who basically ran against immigrants," referring to Randolph-Macon College professor Dave Brat.
"[Brat's] argument was this: There are Americans out of work, so why should we allow immigrants into our country to take those jobs," Clinton said. "I think that's a fair question. But the answer is not to throw out of work and deport the 11 million immigrants who are contributing already to our economy. The answer is to grow our economy to create more jobs."
Clinton made the comments at a Chicago Ideas Week event during which she was interviewed by Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel, who knows Clinton from his time working in her husband's administration and serving as President Barack Obama's first chief of staff.
Brat told NBC's Chuck Todd on Wednesday that "amnesty at the end was a clear differentiator between myself and Eric Cantor ... it also fits into the narrative that Eric just has not been present in the district, and he was out of touch and supporting, you know, the Chamber [of Commerce] agenda on that one instead of -- I was door knocking, I know what -- what's on the mind of the folks."
Brat will face fellow Randolph-Macon College professor Jack Trammell (D) in the general election.
Clinton is continuing on her book tour while speculation swirls about her potential 2016 presidential run.