California design of driver's license for immigrants rejected

Article author: 
Patrick McGreevy
Article publisher: 
The Los Angeles Times
Article date: 
6 May 2014
Article category: 
National News
Article Body: 

Federal authorities have rejected California's proposed design for a driver's license for immigrants in the U.S. illegally, saying it is not distinguishable enough for security purposes from permits given to citizens.

The Washington officials want the license to state clearly on its face "that it is not acceptable for official federal purposes" and to have a design or color that differentiates it at a glance from other licenses.

The current design does not differ from other California licenses except for a subtle mark on the front and a disclaimer on the back in small print: "This card is not acceptable for official federal purposes."

Officials said Tuesday that the decision by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security could delay distribution of the first licenses because immigrant-rights activists have vowed to fight proposals that would make them look significantly different from other licenses.

The activists consider conspicuous markings to be a kind of scarlet letter ...

State Sen. Joel Anderson (R-Alpine) said the state should take Washington's warning seriously.

"Clearly national security demands our state not assist in hiding people who reside here illegally," Anderson said ...

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