‘We shouldn’t legitimize those who break our immigration laws by giving them driver licenses…’
Sen. Kevin Cramer, R-N.D., one of the bill’s co-sponsors, said it was intended to keep in check blue-state policies that benefit Democrats by importing additional noncitizens to secure additional funding and political influence while effectively rendering federal immigration law meaningless.
“States granting licenses to illegal immigrants undermine our immigration laws and threaten public safety,” Cramer said in a statement.
“Our legislation imposes real consequences on states which ignore federal law but still take millions in federal funds,” he said. “It’s a commonsense step toward making America more safe.”
The bill, dubbed the Stop Greenlighting Driver Licenses for Illegal Immigrants Act, would specifically apply to self-proclaimed “sanctuary states” that “defy federal immigration enforcement or that allow illegal aliens to get driver licenses without proof of lawful presence.”
The bill is a response to increased efforts in liberal states to legitimize illegal immigration. New York recently passed a Green Light Law, which allows illegal aliens to apply for driver’s licenses. The day the law went into effect, the state’s DMV offices were overwhelmed with license applicants. Several county clerks ideologically opposed to the law have challenged it in court.
“We shouldn’t legitimize those who break our immigration laws by giving them driver licenses. Unfortunately, states like California give illegal immigrants driver licenses and help them hide from federal law,” Sen. Tom Cotton, R-Ark., who is co-sponsoring the bill, said in a statement.
Blackburn cited the death of 22-year-old Pierce Corcoran, who was killed in 2018 by an illegal driver, Franco Francisco Eduardo. And in 2019, another Tennessee resident, Debbie Burgess, was killed in a hit-and-run accident caused by an illegal alien with a lengthy criminal history.
“While Tennessee and many other states prohibit driver licenses for illegal aliens, a growing number of states are moving in the opposite direction and unleashing dangerous open-borders policies,” Blackburn said in a statement.
“Immigrants must follow the proper federal process and obtain citizenship or lawful status before obtaining a state driver license,” she said.