Just In Time For Independence Day, A Renewed Call For A National ID Card

Leading yesterday’s New York Times op-ed page is a column by Bill Keller, Show Me Your Papers. It supports the faulty claim that we can solve our nation’s immigration woes if we just create a national ID system, and it specifically lauds a 2010 proposal by Sens. Schumer and Graham to create a biometric social security card that would function as a national ID for every American.

This idea is so painfully wrong and would do so much harm to Americans’ freedom that it’s hard to know where to begin to take it apart. Let’s start with the fact that a national ID won’t stop the numerous employers who actually seek out undocumented workers because they can threaten such workers with deportation for reporting underpayment or terrible working conditions. They are already violating the law and existing rules and they don’t care about identification at all.

Additionally, it does little for employers who do pay attention to documentation—it just raises the price on false papers. But even if we put that aside for a moment and accept that there might be some small sliver of employers who will be dissuaded from hiring undocumented workers by a new biometric ID system, it’s not clear why we should take such a drastic step for minimal effect.

In order to get at that very small number of employers, America would need to pay a very high price - about $40 billion (yes with a “b,” and that’s just to get the system running). That is the price tag that researchers at the University of California Berkeley Law School put on the Schumer/Graham proposal. It’s not hard to understand why that number is so huge when you think about everything that a national ID entails. A system must be built whereby everyone reports to a Social Security office, lines up with a birth certificate and other paperwork, is fingerprinted and photographed and then issued a biometric card (yes, a biometric ID requires the fingerprinting of every American). Now add the cost to employers for readers to check the cards and connect with the ID system to make sure they are accurate. It’s an enormous undertaking. Imagine a combination of the Department of Motor Vehicles and the Transportation Security Administration.

Once the country builds this mammoth system, do we really believe it will remain limited to employment? The history of the social security number strongly suggests it will not. For years, those cards stated on their face “for Social Security and tax purposes -- not for identification.” That has not stopped anyone -- from credit card companies to employers to government -- from asking for that magic nine-digit number in order to verify identity.

Social security numbers are also a prime target for identity thieves and it’s safe to assume that your national ID would be an even more inviting target. If you’ve ever had to recover from having your identity stolen, imagine how bad it would be if a thief stole your national ID, perhaps by paying a crooked insider to issue a real card with someone else’s biometrics. If a national ID card were the central identity document in a person’s life, imagine how hard that would be to recover from that type of ID theft.

Worse, building a national ID system creates enormous potential for legal mischief. America already has a terrorist watch list that contains more than a million names, including many people who are barred from enjoying basic freedoms including the right to fly. Imagine government watch lists combined with inevitable mission creep. The pieces already exist to create a system where Americans would not be able to work, fly, vote or carry a gun unless their national ID is in order.

And as Arizona’s SB 1070 law demonstrates, some legislators are itching to expand that even further in service of an anti-immigrant agenda. If these legislators got their way, every aspect of life, including wholly innocent interactions with government officials and police officers, would require you to produce your national ID and prove your identity to avoid being treated as an “illegal alien.” One example of how this policy has already started to take shape: under Alabama’s anti-immigrant law, a passenger in a car who was not suspected of any wrongdoing was arrested (and charged, absurdly, with “driving without a license”) because he did not have acceptable ID.

This isn’t a partisan issue. In 1981, at the outset of the Reagan administration, then-Attorney General William French Smith argued that a national worker ID would be necessary to stop illegal immigration. At a cabinet meeting another member jokingly suggested that it would be easier simply to tattoo an identification number on everyone. President Reagan then exclaimed, “My God! That’s the mark of the beast,” effectively ending the Reagan administration’s discussion of a national ID system.

The idea surfaced again within the Clinton administration’s ill-fated national health care system proposal, in the form of a national medical ID card for every American. Critics at the time feared the plan would create a comprehensive database of everyone’s medical history. Invoking George Orwell, President Clinton himself acknowledged that “any kind of identification card like that sort of smacks of Big Brotherism.”

Keller quotes me as calling a national ID “a tool of social control,” and that’s what it is. It has been rejected by the right and the left because at its heart it’s a permission slip. A requirement that each of us gain approval from the government before enjoying what should be our fundamental right to work, to travel and to participate in American life. Ultimately a national ID card’s failure as an immigration control measure is beside the point. Its potential success—in curtailing our liberties and controlling our movements—is why it must be rejected.

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Dasve Francis

I think Democrats, Republicans and of course ultra left progressives are under the impression that the Constitutional TEA PARTY is declining? This could be any further from the truth, since hundreds each day are joining this split from the GOP and causing frantic demonstrations of nerves in both parties. People who have had no interest in voting before are materializing out of society, because they are now well aware that the Democrats essentially will ignore election laws, as they have done for years. Using any oral device they can, including ‘Voter Suppression, Political Correctness’ and revealing their true nature of being hard core, anti-American. The truth is that without any official oversight, non citizens will vote in a violation of the law and this is what Democrats want? They don’t heed who votes as long as it is for Obama, whether by fraudulent absentee ballot or voting in any precinct. More states than ever before are revising their laws, so any person who votes must have a picture ID, although even this isn’t foolproof.

With the outcome of the Supreme Courts decisive answer, America is under an even more danger of a illegal alien invasion? The fact the Obama administration have ignored many elements of the Constitution, should warn all of us of the evident avenue towards Socialism. A large majority of President Obama voters desire his massive escalation of corpulent government, offering welfare, food stamps and public giveaways. These are dregs that have probably never worked in their lives and live of the taxpayers. 40 percent of Americans have never paid anything in federal or state taxes. It is the same with over 20 million illegal aliens who stay in dark corners of our society who pay nothing. Many illegal alien families are collecting large sums of money from child tax credits, when even the child is not resident here? That is $4.2 billion dollars that should be provided to the lawful impoverished people.

I don’t blame the illegal aliens, but a lying decade of governments that have intentionally overlooked our laws; otherwise illegal entry would be a felony. Not just the Democrats but the Republicans as well, that’s why we need desperately to remove old incumbents entrenched in Washington and replace them with fresh TEA PARTY Senators and House Representatives. America is become a hive of corruption, that emanates from Congress. That isn’t to say that all the politicians are unwilling to fight for the rights of all Americans. But what is going on, when 8 percent of birthright citizens, naturalized and permanent residence are jobless? While throughout the country illegal migrants and immigrants are employed. This is a disgrace to us as nation that supposedly believes in the “rule of Law.” This happens when the federal government is truly the instigators of this immigration mess and should be held accountable? Not border states as Arizona, being threatened by a federal agency uncontrollable. Arizona doing the right thing for its people was a scapegoat for generations of incompetence.

The new ObamaCare law is yet another magnet, which will attract millions more illegal aliens over our threshold. My guess in some clandestine way illegal immigrants will be able to take advantage of this health care law and further drain state treasuries? Americans are already at a disadvantage, when it comes to healthcare as the majority is forced to pay through federal mandate for illegal alien emergency care? Not the farmers who employ them, not the thousands of businesses that pay under the table; again it’s the taxpayer. The open border zealots want a global government and their philosophy is just that; wide open borders. Why does being in this sovereign nation, without documentation and violating the law, give illegal aliens the privilege of stealing the lawful populace money. Why must we, the taxpayer be forced to pay for the children of illegal aliens education, a family’s health care?

I don’t know what Mitt Romney has in mind on Immigration, but the TEA PARTY says No? Americans have been taken for granted, as have the courageous Border Patrol agents who protect the fence; it’s hard to believe that there a big signs in the deserts along the border, in our own country warning us of entering. That signifies it’s dangerous to enter these regions, because of the drug cartels and armed foreign nationals. It’s a proven fact that property owners along the border regions are fearful for their lives and must carry a firearm all the time.


To really make life unsympathetic for illegal alien criminals, our gutless Republicans should assume E-Verify as a mandatory apparatus without fail. Rep. Lamar Smiths bill ‘The Legal Workforce Act’ (H.R. 2885) informs a business owner whether an individual has a right to work. Currently it is a voluntary policy, but citizens can change this by rattling the cages of the Republican Party. It has become a remarkable electronic program, which detects unauthorized non citizens already hired, but then flagged and can only be resolved by stepping into Social Security offices. No illegal alien would dream of doing that, even if they are in possession of stolen ID documents? Of course the mainstream Liberal press is adamant in denouncing the E-Verify business checking Database?

Just as vital in importance is the BIRTHRIGHT CITIZENSHIP Bill (H.R.140) amendment law. This disqualifies illegal alien mothers from gaining immediate acceptance of their unborn baby smuggled through ports of entry, either across the ocean or through our limited border fence defenses. Undoubtedly a misinterpreted law that was originally consigned to slaves during the Civil War in the emancipation decree, not an identified ruling by SCOTUS, but unfortunately a huge tax burden that must be resolved. These Foothold children are costing $100 of billions of dollars in welfare, cash payments, education and health care treatment to the states and pouring through the cracks in our laws at a rate of 400.000 a year. The only obstruction is the special interests groups in the halls of Congress, which pour large donations into both parties. Pro-illegal alien forces in the Democrat and Republican Party and stopping these bills from becoming the law of the land.

No! You Republicans and Democrats the TEA PARTY is swelling, not shrinking as you will see in November. All people of every race, religion or political party affiliate should join a local chapter. Obviously people who scorned our immigration laws are not welcome. We can relieve this nation of politicians, governors, mayors and all others, who don’t comply with the Constitution. The Rupert Murdoch personages are isolated from the real world in their mansions, same as the celebrities who know nothing about buying a
This is the time when every American who believes in the ‘Rule of Law’ and steps forward to let their Senator or Congress person knows how you will vote. Tell the politician’s aide and that you want them to pass E-Verify and the Birthright Citizenship bills. Citizen voters should phone Congress at the central Washington, D.C., Switchboard at 202-224-3121. Insist YOUR CONGRESSMAN/WOMAN TO fulfill their obligation to the oath of office and stop pandering to the businesses that use discount workers or the Democrats who are overlooking illegal aliens voting. You have the power of the VOTE to demand they sponsor these to policies or we are doomed to a future, without any restrictions on President Obama to initiate another spending spree. The country has a near $16 trillion deficit that must be stopped and now.

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