“Securing state-issued identification documents is a common-sense national security and law enforcement imperative, which also helps to combat… illegal immigration.” 9/11 Commission Report (2004)
New Jersey Republican Assemblyman Erik Peterson expressed concerns that the bill (allowing illegal aliens to obtain a driver’s license) accommodates people who have broken the law by living in the country undocumented during a State House hearing last week, according to the Times.
Preventing terrorists from obtaining state-issued identification documents is critical to securing America against terrorism. As the 9/11 Commission noted, “For terrorists, travel documents are as important as weapons.” The 9/11 Commission Report: Final Report of the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks upon the United States, at 384 (2004).
Secure driver’s licenses and identification documents are a vital component of a holistic national security strategy. Law enforcement must be able to rely on government-issued identification documents and know that the bearer of such a document is who he or she claims to be. REAL ID is a coordinated effort by the states and the Federal Government to improve the reliability and accuracy of state-issued identification documents, which should inhibit terrorists’ ability to evade detection by using fraudulent identification.
The 9/11 Commission recommended that the Federal Government work with other layers of government to solidify the security of government-issued documents. Securing state-issued identification documents is a common-sense national security and law enforcement imperative, which also helps to combat identity fraud and illegal immigration.
[The 911] terrorists got licenses and ID cards in the first place was so that they could avoid using their passports, which they feared would attract unwanted attention. The 9/11 Commission found that the 19 hijackers had been issued 16 state driver’s licenses (from Arizona, California, Florida and Virginia) and 14 state ID cards (from Florida, Maryland and Virginia). They also had at least364 aliases among them, according to the Commission, so it is possible that had additional licenses and/or ID cards that we will never know about.