Archived: Time to Approve Drivers Licenses for Undocumented Immigrants

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Prior to 1960 all motorists were allowed to apply for a driver’s license and they were given one if they met all the requirements.

This fact allowed police to identify drivers stopped for traffic infractions, found to be driving under the influence or without insurance or without a driver’s license. It also made it possible for those drivers to obtain auto insurance.

This newspaper has repeatedly endorsed the passage of legislation to allow undocumented residents to receive a California driver’s license if they pass all the tests and requirements needed to obtain one. As we have said again and again, it’s in the interest of safety that we believe all California drivers should be licensed.

LAPD Chief Charlie Beck and LA County Sheriff Lee Baca among other officials have been frustrated by the fact that many drivers in accidents cannot always be identified, nor have they been able to stop people from driving without a license.

You can’t register a car or force a driver to get adequate insurance if the owner of the vehicle does not have a valid driver’s license. This makes little sense to us, since rather than improving public safety on our roads, the prohibition is actually causing unlicensed drivers out of fear of losing their car to violate more laws, such as fleeing the scene of an accident, event when not at fault.

The issue has been so vilified by those who are either anti- or pro-illegal immigrants, that it has become nearly impossible to discuss the policy without raising outrage.

Given that reality, we applaud those brave officials who have nonetheless dared address reality, and speak in favor of allowing undocumented immigrants to get a driver’s license as a matter of public safety.

An example of why its good to have all drivers licensed and all autos registered occurred on Tuesday night, when during a police pursuit of a driver who failed to stop ensued. Police were able to identify the car’s owner and address because the car was registered. They were able to identify the driver who didn’t own the car and get a name and address from his family. The pursuit ended with no violence whatsoever.

The idea of having two different kinds of licenses so that an undocumented immigrant can’t use it for identity purposes, such as one with “I” to identify someone as an immigrant, is sure to lead to racial or immigrant profiling, which should not be tolerated.

Allowing undocumented, unlicensed drivers who are undocumented to get a California driver’s license is a step toward safer roads, and one we are all for.

Posted - Copyright © 2022 Eastern Group Publications, Inc.

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4 Comments


  1. I hope this Bill gets approved soon. I am an undocumented immigrant from Poland and I have been living here for nearly 11 years. That’s more than I have lived in my own home country. I go to school and I graduated from one of Chicago’s top high schools, Whitney Young Magnet High School. I understand the split opinions that American citizens have about undocumented immigrants but you can’t just bundle all of us together and judge us and call us terrorist or leaches. Really America? This country was made by immigrants and it is suppose to be the land of opportunities. You should take pride in the fact that the rest of the world is seeking support, guidance and a new start in this land. Sure I can go back to Poland and get mt drivers license there. But then what? With no job, how can I make a living? So please, I know that all of the undocumented population is not made up of people who go according to the law but don’t think that we are all thieves, murderers and terrorists. That is just being stereotypical. And about receiving financial support from the country….I receive none. My dad pays taxes and I have an IRS number. I do not have financial aid for school so I pay it out of my pocket. So please, American citizens, reconsider and try to steer away from those stereotypical and judgmental thoughts, and think for a second, why are these people here, what brought them here and how are some of them living their lives.

  2. Delaware Bob on

    The thing to do is get rid of the illegal aliens and they can get a drivers license in their own country.

    I’m not a republican, but I will be voting for one this election, and pray to God he will get our immigration laws enforced. I’m sick of obama pandering to these people who have NO RIGHT to be in this country. The illegal aliens who don’t have our jobs, are using this country as a welfare country with their anchor babies, (illegal alien children). Why should illegal aliens be entitled to a DREAM Act? They are in this country ILLEGALLY no matter how they got here. It’s time to get these illegal aliens back to their own country where they belong. They DO NOT belong here!

  3. Dave Francis on

    The “Birthright Citizenship” (H.R.140) Bill that needs every voters attention, as it is singularly the most expensive benefit, that citizens are forced to pay in unfunded mandates. It is concealed that support for illegal aliens cost over $113 billion dollars a year by government and Liberal press editors. If you really want the facts about the illegal alien incursions and many other problem that cause Americans unnecessary pain and suffering, then you need to view the uncensored pages, not suppressed by the Leftist media at (Google) AMERICAN PATROL. For information about the dishonesty in Washington and state congressional seats of power, check the web pages of the (Google) JUDICIAL WATCH.

    Although mandatory E-Verify is not as famous according to which side of the aisle in Congress, it is significant that the word is spreading about the powerful application, specifically when the Census Bureau admits that around 8 million plus are working illegally in this country. Every American is supposed to think jobs are the only incentive that drives foreigners, across our sovereign borders, but easy access to taxpayer benefits as well. Annually there has been huge fraudulent child tax credit reimbursement and also a sudden rising crime rate, including unceasing drunken driving ending in death. For all intents and purposes, President Obama has frozen immigration enforcement and through his orders allowing many foreigners to stay here.

    Every American voter has a chance to fight against unfair taxation, which through judicial unfunded mandates is placed firmly in the taxpayers lap. In this session of Congress or before the 2012 election, it is urgent you concentrate in phoning or otherwise contacting Democrat, Republican Senators and House Congressmen at 202-224-3121 to inform them strongly you want both nationwide E-Verify and the citizenship bill passed. Unless these laws are enacted, then under another five years of President Obama we could see…

  4. marco sagastume on

    I think its good, that their giving illegal aliens drivers licence because everyone deservs a chance n if their illegal its for a reason, they want their family to have a better life, n if gettin papers to come to our coutry was easy then they wouldnt risk their life crossing the border, they say that mexicans r the gang bangers, thiefs, & drug dealers what no one seems to listen or care is that they are gangbanging because parents didnt want them or they would treat them bad so that drove them to what they thought was friends or “family”, or steal or drug deal cause they need to feed their kids, wife & family in other countries, everyone sees the trouble but never the struggle, i used to be agaist illegal immigrants but thinking about it we are all humans, we are all equal we all have feelings, we all cry, we all smile, we all walk, we all speak (differerent lenguage bt thats what humas have decided, whats made by man can be un done but we are ALL created by god n that cant be un done, am giving my opinion, i dont expect everyone to like my comment bt think about it am right

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