What Hillary Should Have Said (in :90).

31 10 2007

Do I support Governor Spitzer’s plan to issue drivers’ licenses to illegal immigrants? Well, that’s a loaded question. When you’re running for president, to say that you support someone else’s plan implies that you would take the same action in their place – which makes lending full support to a colleague tricky.

I admire Governor Spitzer’s effort here. In a country where we have really failed to deal with the long-standing problem of illegal immigration, it is reasonable to assume that we will be met with strong and complicated consequences. One of those consequences is that these people are so afraid of capture and deportment that they hide in the shadows of our society, often letting crime go unreported. They would rather become silent victims than call on the help and protection of our police force, because of their fear of being discovered.

We face another safety issue in that we have illegal immigrants operating vehicles on our roads and highways without proper training and supervision. We don’t want those people driving without a license for the same reason we don’t want US citizens driving without licenses – because these drivers have not been trained, tested and approved to safely navigate our roads. Offering licenses to everyone provides a means by which everyone has the opportunity to learn to drive safely and can be identified on the road by license plates.

Now, if I understand the plan correctly, Governor Spitzer does not just want to issue drivers’ licenses to illegal immigrants, but several different categories of licenses simply to help bring these individuals out of the shadows. It would benefit all of us and our national security efforts to provide these folks with identification so that they can be documented and accounted for – not to mention travel and participate in our economy.

So, do I support the governor’s plan? Yes, I see that our national system is broken and in lieu of snapping his fingers and solving New York’s specific problem instantaneously, the governor must take creative steps in the interim. Do I think this is ideal? Absolutely not. But, under the circumstances, I applaud Governor Spitzer for trying his best to find a solution for keeping New York safe when George Bush doesn’t seem to be able to.




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