House Bill Condemns Issuing Drivers' Licenses For Illegal Immigrants

Iowa Congressman Leads Effort Against Practice That 'Rewards Those who Don't Respect our Laws'

WASHINGTON, Nov. 6 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ --- Iowa Congressman Tom Latham will introduce legislation Tuesday in the United States House of Representatives which reinforces the belief that "states should not issue drivers' licenses or other government-issued photo identification to illegal aliens."

The bill follows a groundswell of national public outrage over the announcement by the Governor of the State of New York to join at least three other states in allowing illegal immigrants to the United States to obtain state drivers' licenses.

"These states have implemented a policy that rewards illegal behavior with government recognition," said Latham. "It sends a clear message that breaking the immigration laws of America holds absolutely no consequences."

Since New York Governor Eliot Spitzer's announcement, law enforcement and election officials have raised additional concerns with the policy.

On November 1st the New York Post reported that the president of the 12,000-member National Border Patrol Council said that border patrol officers are opposed to the practice, "primarily because it poses such a severe risk to our homeland security."

"Gov. Spitzer's decision to allow illegal immigrants in New York to obtain New York State driver's licenses only solidifies the need for more aggressive immigration legislation in the United States," said New York Congressman Randy Kuhl (R), an original co-sponsor of the bill. "This policy undermines the preventive measures that protect our country from national security threats. The September 11, 2001 hijackers had at least 35 licenses, which helped them to rent cars and open bank accounts."

There are additional concerns over how the policy could affect the integrity of the election process, especially in light of the number of states that allow same day voter registration on Election Day . A spokesman for the New York State Board of Elections confirmed the concerns when he told the New York Post that it would be tough to catch "if someone wanted to take advantage of the system and try to get a number of people registered who aren't citizens" using drivers' licenses to accomplish election fraud.

Latham called the legislation, known as a sense of congress resolution, an important first step in rallying Members of Congress to reject this reckless policy and work together to draft a comprehensive bill that will make it very difficult for any state to issue the licenses to illegal immigrants.

The text of the bill is as follows:

Whereas some states issue state drivers' licenses to illegal aliens,

Whereas by providing official government-issued identification to individuals who are in the United States illegally, states and other government entities reward those who show disrespect and disregard for our nation's immigration laws,

Whereas the very act of entering the United States illegally shows disrespect for the nation's laws and should not be rewarded in any way,

Whereas issuing drivers' licenses to undocumented individuals presents a national security risk and enables election fraud,

Be it resolved, it is the sense of the House of Representatives that states should not issue drivers' licenses or other government-issued photo identification to illegal aliens.

SOURCE Office of Iowa Congressman Tom Latham