In January 2015, California "residents" no longer were required to prove that they were American citizens in order to obtain a driver's license. All they had to do was "show eligible proof of identification and residency in the state."
Under the law, "no one may discriminate against a holder of an AB-60 license, or use this license to attempt to question the holder's citizenship or immigration status."
But the law also says "these driver's licenses may not be used for identification purposes." Odd, since one of the main requirements for registering to vote is a state driver's license or ID number.
Still, never mind that. Despite the very clear danger that the law could be misused, business is booming in Cali.
Nearly a million illegal aliens will have driver's licenses by the end of the year, the Sacramento Bee reports.
Through June 2017, the Department of Motor Vehicles has issued approximately 905,000 driver’s licenses under Assembly Bill 60, the law requiring applicants to prove only their identity and California residency, rather than their legal presence in the state.
Passed in 2013, after more than 15 years of lobbying by advocates, AB 60 was intended to bolster public safety and reduce penalties for undocumented immigrants who drive. When it finally took effect at the beginning of 2015, making California the 10th state to offer driver’s licenses to immigrants living in the country illegally, the response was so immense that it doubled initial expectations.
But that pace has "slowed considerably" now that Donald Trump is president. "The DMV issued about 11,000 AB 60 licenses last month, the lowest number since the program launched. There have been approximately 83,000 issued in the first half of 2017, only slightly more than March 2015, when the monthly total peaked with 76,000," the Bee reported.
The Los Angeles Times laments Trump's effect on the law. In an April story, headlined "Giving driver's licenses to those here illegally transformed many lives. Then came Trump," the Times said: "Being able to drive without fear of arrests has given them access to more jobs and made them more confident drivers, they say."
But President Trump’s crackdown on immigration has spawned anxiety among those license-holders, many of whom worry that the cards will be used to identify them as being here illegally and lead to their deportations. That has prompted some to avoid getting the licenses, despite assurances from the Department of Motor Vehicles that it will not share information with immigration officials.