California On Verge of Licensing Illegal Aliens

Striking another blow against the integrity of America’s borders, her immigration system, and her national security, the California state senate approved a bill (SB 60) that would grant drivers licenses to illegal aliens residing in the state. Despite vetoing similar bills twice in the past, Democratic Gov. Gray Davis-currently in a fight for his political life as Californians prepare to vote next month on whether to recall him-says he will sign this bill.

The senate passed the bill 23 to 15 on September 3, one day after the state assembly voted 44 to 30 to pass it in the last of a series of votes on the bill. Sponsor and state Sen. Gil Cedillo (D.-Los Angeles) noted that until 1994, illegal aliens could get drivers licenses in California. The new bill will allow anyone with a federal taxpayer ID number and another form of ID, the criteria for which will be set by California’s DMV, to get a license.

“We have a governor right now who is champing at the bit to sign this into law. Why? To save his job,” said Assemblyman Dennis Mountjoy (R.-Monrovia) during debate on the bill. State Sen. Tom McClintock (R.-Thousand Oaks), currently running for governor, voted against the bill.

California has a “motor voter” system making it easy for those with drivers licenses to register to vote, but that remains illegal for all who are not citizens of the United States.

Dan Stein, executive director of the Federation for Immigration Reform (FAIR), issued a statement September 3. “The decision of the California legislature to approve a measure that will grant drivers licenses to illegal aliens, and Gov. Gray Davis’ promise to sign the bill, is an act of blatant irresponsibility and short-term political expediency,” he said. “The approval of SB 60 is but the latest example of the ruinous policymaking that has bankrupted that once-proud state. In addition to rewarding illegal aliens and further burdening millions of hard-working, law-abiding, taxpaying residents of California, the legislature’s actions will also endanger the security of all Americans. As soon as Gov. Davis sets pen to paper, everyone, including terrorists will be able to obtain a California driver’s license-a document that can be used to board airplanes and gain access to other sensitive areas.”