Streams

Spitzer Backs Down

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Errol Louis sticks around and is joined by Danny Hakim, New York Times Albany bureau chief, to discuss Gov. Spitzer's decision to drop his plan for offering undocumented immigrants drivers' licenses.

Guests:

Danny Hakim and Errol Louis
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Comments [2]

Daniel from Manhattan

Spitzer wanted New York State to contribute something we really need for security purposes: universal identification. That is, internal passports because our borders are permanently porous and we need to be able to verify the identity of everyone alive or dead existing within them.

The only systems we have now that come close to this are drivers' licenses issued by the individual states and territories. That's why Spitzer wanted to expand their use to track more of the people who have no other papers. I'm not sure many undocumented would have "bought in."

Universal identification by means of internal passports (such as were mandatory in the USSR) is OPPOSED by powerful interests in this country who value our personal freedom of movement and privacy, more than the security universal identification would provide. That's where the real killer opposition came from. Is there no solution to this?

Nov. 15 2007 04:37 PM
john from manhattan

I don't know that anyone has covered this, but Spitzer wanted to make licenses easy to get for illegal immigrants. Native-born Americans, last time I checked, are required to show 8 separate pieces of ID to get the same thing. How much support could he have hoped for?

Nov. 15 2007 11:35 AM

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