The acting head of the Department of Homeland Security on Tuesday requested a review of how recently passed state laws granting illegal aliens the right to obtain driver’s licenses will affect enforcement of federal immigration laws.
Acting DHS Secretary Chad Wolf sent a memo to agencies including U.S. Customs and Border Protection, the Coast Guard, and the Transportation Security Administration regarding the new law, which was formerly known as The Driver’s License Access and Privacy Act.
In the memo, Wolf requested a study to find how it would affect DHS’ immigration enforcement activities, human trafficking, counterterrorism, and drug smuggling.
According to his memo, which was obtained by The Associated Press, Wolf said that the department must be “prepared to deal with and counter these impacts as we protect the homeland.”
In addition, Wolf asked the agencies to see what Department of Motor Vehicles information is readily available, how it’s used for daily operations, and what kind of security problems may occur without DMV data.
Last month, New York became the 13th state to allow illegal aliens to obtain a driver’s license under a bill commonly referred to as The Green Light Law.
The law allows individuals aged 16 and older to apply for a standard license, to include those who have never received a Social Security number.
But applicants must show a combination of documents proving their identity, date of birth, and New York State residency. That could include a foreign passport, a U.S. Municipal ID card with photo, or a foreign birth certificate.
Other states to have authorized the law include California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Illinois, Maryland, New Mexico, Nevada, Utah, Vermont, and Washington.
“The Trump administration takes the mission of protecting the Homeland very seriously,” DHS spokeswoman Heather Swift told AP, adding that these types of laws are unsafe and “make it easier for terrorists and criminals to obtain fraudulent documents.”