Updated: 2:24pm EST.
California gubernatorial candidate Meg Whitman thinks her former housekeeper should be deported, she said on Wednesday in an interview on Fox News.
"It breaks my heart, but she should be deported because she forged documents, and she lied about her immigration status," Whitman told Fox's Greta Van Susteren.
"Gloria Allred pulled off a political stunt," she continued. "And you know what? On November 3rd, no one's going to care about Nicky Diaz. But the law is the law, and we live in the rule of law. It's important."
Whitman was questioned last month about her relationship with her former housekeeper, Nicky Diaz Santillan, after Diaz Santillanthat Whitman treated her poorly and knew about her status as an undocumented immigrant. Until Wednesday night, however, Whitman had declined to comment on whether or not she thought Santillan should be deported.CBS News Complete Coverage: Election 2010
The Service Employees International Union (SEIU), which supports Brown in the election, released a statement in response to Whitman's comments, accusing her of "making a desperate attempt to pander to the right in the last five days of the election," according to the Los Angeles Times.
Whitman later backtracked on the assertion during a campaign stop in
Stockton, Calif. on Thursday, saying, in a reflection of her earlier
position, that the decision of what to do with the information regarding
Santillan's citizenship status was not hers to make.
"She is here illegally. She's breaking the law right now, so we'll leave it for the federal authorities," Whitman said.
A Field Poll released on Thursday showed Brown leading Whitman by 10 points, with a 49 percent to 39 percent advantage.
Lucy Madison is a political reporter for CBSNews.com. You can read more of her posts here. Follow Hotsheet on Facebook and Twitter.