NEWPORT BEACH (CBSLA.com) — A battle is brewing over the design of driver’s licenses for more than a million undocumented immigrants in California.
The U.S. Department of Homeland Security wants the licenses to have “Driving Privileges Only” clearly marked on the front, while the state wants the license to have similar marking on the back.
Nearly 20 members of the California congressional delegation, including Rep. Loretta Sanchez from Garden Grove, have signed a letter to Homeland Security asking why they need the words on the front of the license.
“Can’t you train your people to just turn it over and look on the back side? It’s not that difficult to do that,” Sanchez said. “We would like them to allow the driver’s license that we have designed for the state of California, one in which on the back side, in plain letters, we say, ‘This person is a foreign national.’”
Congressman Dana Rohrabacher and Sanchez are miles apart on the issue, reported KCAL9’s Dave Bryan.
“I would never have signed any letter asking to do something, especially with driver’s licenses that make it more convenient for illegal immigrants to be here, and to encourage even more illegals to come here because now it’s more convenient to live here,” Rohrabacher said.
He said that California’s idea to hide the relevant information about a person’s status on the back of the license is a terrible idea and would have bad consequences.
“The whole idea about giving someone a driver’s license who is here illegally and giving them one that could be mistaken for a legitimate license to a U.S. citizen will do nothing but confuse the issue and make things worse,” Rohrabacher said.
Sanchez, however, said the marking on the front would single out undocumented immigrants.
“We believe that that can be seen from afar and that would create problems with shysters and other people who prey on immigrants in this country,” she said.