Tuesday, May 03, 2005

It's a start

It's mistitled since the only immigration involved is illegal, but House, Senate Accept Immigration Proposal:
Motor vehicle bureaus would require four types of identification from Americans seeking driver's licenses under a proposed law designed to prod states into verifying the citizenship of applicants.

Uniform requirements for driver's license applications were among proposals accepted by House and Senate negotiators trying to resolve differences in their versions of a bill to pay for military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan
A copy of the legislation, obtained by The Associated Press, indicated an applicant for a driver's license would be asked to show a birth certificate, a photo ID, proof of Social Security number, and a document with full name and home address. How it would affect the renewal of licenses for U.S. citizens was unclear.
The assumption that current licensees are US citizens is unwarranted, but I get the idea.
Motor vehicle departments would be required to verify the documents and Social Security number.
Easier said than done, of course.
States still could give licenses to illegal immigrants, but they would have different designs or colors to alert security officers that they are unacceptable as IDs for boarding planes or entering federal buildings.
Er, why do they get licenses? I at least hope they're required to point them away from the "motor voter" registration.
The driver's license requirements were part of a House plan that Senate representative accepted on Monday. Congressional aides, speaking on condition of anonymity, said negotiators were still apart on whether to devote $4 million each to a Fire Science Academy in Elko, Nev., and environment cleanup of a former Energy Department site in New Mexico.
The wheels of Congress are lubricated with pork fat.
Also in dispute was about $600 million in the Senate version of the bill to hire 1,000 border patrol officers and other immigration agents and provide 2,000 new beds for detainees.
Gosh, if you cut back on a Fire Academy here and there, you could afford to protect the border!
Negotiators also accepted a House proposal to allow the Homeland Security secretary to bypass U.S. laws to build border barriers, including the remainder of a fence on the California-Mexico border.
Translation: the ecoweenies can't block it with endless lawsuits.
Governors and state motor vehicle departments had opposed the driver's license provisions as too costly. They also complained state motor vehicle officials will be forced to take on the role of immigration officers.
Er, actually it sounds like they're being asked to do their part to fight identity fraud by dispensing correct legal documents.
Civil liberties and gun rights supporters opposed the measure on privacy grounds, saying they fear driver's licenses will evolve into a national identification card.
How does this expose one's privacy any more than today's driver's license? I'm also puzzled how gun rights come into this, but I never doubt the AP. But here's a flash: driver's licenses (and the associated nondriver ID cards in most states) are already de facto national ID cards. All this does is establish uniform standards and prevent identity fraud. Or it might, if the usual pandering politicians, hungry for illegal alien votes, don't manage to sabotage it.

And speaking of driver's licenses, there's this charming tale from New York:
The man charged with killing a New City mother and then taunting her family and friends with 51 calls from her cell phone was wanted on a 2002 warrant accusing him of beating up a Ramapo woman, police said yesterday.

Mary Nagle, 42, was strangled Friday after she was beaten, stabbed and sexually assaulted in her home, the county medical examiner's autopsy revealed yesterday.

A man identified by his California driver's license as Douglas Martin Herrera, 39, has been charged with first- and second-degree murder.
Clarkstown police said yesterday that they were investigating the Guatemalan-born man's identity, age and status in the United States through a nationwide criminal DNA database and the U.S. Citizens and Immigration Services.
The police investigation into Herrera's background found he had used different names and birth dates at various times.

When arrested Friday, he had a valid California driver's license that listed his name as Douglas Martin Herrera and his age as 39.

In July 2002, Ramapo police arrested him under the name Ronald Douglas, with a different birth date, on a misdemeanor charge of third-degree assault, according to a Ramapo police report obtained yesterday.
Delo said detectives suspected that Herrera's California driver's license contained phony information.
Ya think?