Judicial Watch • Arizona Sued for Denying Illegal Aliens Driver’s Licenses

Arizona Sued for Denying Illegal Aliens Driver’s Licenses

Arizona Sued for Denying Illegal Aliens Driver’s Licenses

DECEMBER 03, 2012

In the latest legal action taken by the increasingly powerful open borders movement, the governor of Arizona is being sued by a coalition of civil rights groups for banning illegal immigrants from getting driver’ licenses in her state.

Arizona Governor Jan Brewer issued the order in late August to help counter the Obama Administration’s stealth amnesty program, which is sparing hundreds of thousands of illegal aliens from deportation. Under the plan, called “Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals,” illegal immigrants under the age of 30 who came to the U.S. as children can remain in the country and obtain work permits. President Obama sidestepped Congress and created it in June via executive order.  

Brewer fought back with her own order to stop illegal immigrants who obtain work permits under the federal program from getting taxpayer-funded perks or licenses in her state. In the document Brewer explains that allowing Arizona’s 80,000 deferred action recipients improper access to state or local benefits will have significant and lasting impacts on the state’s budget, its healthcare system and additional public benefits that taxpayers fund.

The open borders movement immediately blasted the governor, calling her order a “mean-spirited” policy that compounds the “climate of fear and mistrust” already created by Arizona’s strict immigration control law. Denying illegal aliens driver’s licenses is a “feeble attempt to score a political point against the president’s humane and sensible action” and a “cruel slap in the face to thousands of young Arizonans,” according to National Council of La Raza President Janet Murguia.

Now Arizona has to waste taxpayer dollars to defend its policy in court. In a 32-page complaint the groups—which include the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund (MALDEF) and the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU)—claim the measure is unjust and unconstitutional because it violates the supremacy and equal protection clauses of the United States Constitution. “As the President of the United States has recognized, these young immigrants are Americans in their heart, in their minds, in every single way but one: On paper,” the lawsuit says.    

Nearly 300,000 illegal immigrants have already applied for the president’s six-month-old amnesty, according to Homeland Security figures quoted in an Arizona newspaper. The program is expected to spare around 1 million illegal aliens from deportation nationwide and has already proven to be quite costly, according to a variety of news reports from states that share a border with Mexico.  

For instance, it’s costing a cash-strapped California public school system hundreds of thousands of dollars. That’s because applicants must prove they have lived in the U.S. continuously since 2007 so they are rushing to obtain school records that confirm it. In the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) this has created a “bureaucratic nightmare” because an estimated 200,000 current and former students are eligible and they have flooded schools throughout the sprawling urban district to get documents. This is costing the district at least $200,000 in staff expenses, according to the area’s largest newspaper.    

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