With drivers licenses in hand, terrorists are better able to blend in—and avoid detection. This isn’t just conjecture or speculation; it is exactly what several of the 9/11 terrorists did.
So what’s the solution? Not a national ID card, for which many are sure to clamor following the release of the GAO report. The federal government has proven completely inept, for example, at deporting just those illegal aliens that they’ve arrested. Witness John Lee Malvo, the DC sniper, who was released on his own recognizance after being arrested by the border patrol.
As amply demonstrated by the GAO investigators, the real problem is one of enforcement. In most cases, the initial attempts to get a license were thwarted because a clerk spotted the fake documents. But those same clerks then handed back the phony paperwork, allowing the agents to try again at the same location or a different one nearby. In each such instance, no other state offices or law enforcement agencies were notified, and the agents who had just been caught using fake documents walked out unscathed.
It’s hard to blame the clerks for laxity, though, considering the cues they receive from the political leadership. More and more politicians—and even some Republicans—are embracing the move to issue drivers licenses to illegal aliens, who are often referred to by their boosters as “undocumented.”
It should come as little surprise that the worst state examined by the GAO—California—is also the state that most recently passed a law making illegal aliens eligible for licenses. If politicians are tripping over themselves to give licenses to people here illegally who most likely can’t even prove their real identities, why should the minimum wage staff at the DMV care about security?
The scariest thought: when clerks issue licenses to people who are “undocumented” or who have fake documents, how do they know they’re not terrorists?
Joel Mowbray, who got his start with Townhall.com, is an award-winning investigative journalist, nationally-syndicated columnist and author of Dangerous Diplomacy: How the State Department Threatens America's Security.
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