On the invitation of Senator Bob Singer (R-30), Republican State Committee Chairman Doug Steinhardt testified against enabling driver’s licenses for residents not legally in New Jersey.
“We won’t stop coming here,” Steinhardt told the Senate Transportation Committee.
Driver’s licenses for “illegal immigrants” (S-3229) is an affront to hard-working New Jerseyans who follow the law, said Steinhardt.
“Idealism* over ideas,” said the chair, in reference to the majority party’s Trenton agenda.
“We’re a nation of immigrants, yes, but we’re also a nation of laws,” Steinhardt said.
It was a frontal assault on Democrats, and Senate Transportation Committee Chairman Pat Diegnan, seemingly somewhat aghast by the tone of the GOP chair’s critique, with a half chuckle asked his colleagues if anyone had questions.
From the bill, a companion of which passed earlier this week out of the Assembly Judiciary Committee:
This bill creates two categories of basic driver’s licenses, motorcycle licenses, probationary licenses, and non-driver identification cards (hereinafter referred to collectively as licenses and identification cards).
Under the bill, a person may apply for a standard license or identification card or a REAL ID license or identification card. A REAL ID license or identification card is to comply with the provisions of the federal “REAL ID Act of 2005,” any amendatory or supplementary acts, and any federal regulations adopted thereunder. Under the bill, the fee for a REAL ID license or identification card is greater than the fee for a standard license or identification card.
The bill allows a New Jersey resident who meets requirements for the issuance of a license or identification, but who is unable to prove lawful presence in the United States to receive a standard license or identification card if the person provides satisfactory proof of identity and age, two documents providing proof of New Jersey residency, and proof of the person’s social security number. If the person applying for a standard license or identification card does not have a social security number, the person is required to indicate, in a manner prescribed by the New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission (MVC), that the person is not eligible to receive a social security number.
In addition to requiring an applicant to submit satisfactory proof of identity and age, an applicant for a REAL ID license or identification card is required to submit two documents providing satisfactory proof of New Jersey residency, proof of the applicant’s social security number or verification of ineligibility for a social security number in accordance with the “REAL ID Act of 2005,” and proof that the applicant’s presence in the United States is authorized under federal law.
The bill requires a standard license or identification card to indicate that the license or identification card is not to be accepted as identification for an official federal purpose and is to bear a unique design or color to indicate that the license or identification card is not to be accepted for an official federal purpose. An official federal purpose includes but is not limited to accessing federal facilities, boarding federally regulated commercial aircraft, and entering nuclear power plants.
Editor’s Note: An earlier version of this piece mistakenly identified Steinhardt’s condemnation of “nihilism,” but alas, the hearing, while containing quite a bit, lacked a reference to Jean Paul Sartre.