Coastal Post Online


October, 2003

"Friends" Sic Ashcroft On Immigrants

   Friends of Immigration Law Enforcement (FILE) is urging the US Justice Department to challenge a new California law that will allow illegal aliens to obtain official California driver's licenses.  In a September 23 letter to Attorney General John Ashcroft, FILE argues that the new law is in conflict with federal immigration law, and is therefore unconstitutional.
   Under Federal law, it is illegal to encourage a foreign national to reside illegally in the United States.  The courts have held that "encouraging" includes actions that permit illegal aliens to be more confident that they may continue to reside with impunity in the United States. 
   As FILE points out in its letter, a state law granting driver's licenses to illegal aliens is, unquestionably, an action that encourages illegal aliens to remain in the United States, and is therefore in conflict with Federal immigration law.
   Under the Commerce Clause of Article I of the US Constitution, the Congress is delegated almost total authority over every aspect of immigration policy, and under the Supremacy Clause of Article VI, when a state law conflicts with a federal law enacted pursuant to Congress' delegated authority, the state law must yield.
   The driver's licenses for illegals debate in California has taken on ominous racial and ethnic overtones, showing that the political consequences of mass immigration threatens the very foundation of the country itself--the rule of law based on our written Constitution.
   California's new driver's licenses for illegal aliens law (and a number of other states have enacted similar laws) has overstepped the bounds of permissible state actions, and it is the duty of the Federal government to rein California in by legally challenging the new law as unconstitutional.



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