Fresh from our "And you thought Arizona was bad" file, it is being reported that the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles can continue to decline using federal work-permit cards as proof of lawful presence in the United States when issuing a driver's license or an identification card, now with the backing of Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli. You may remember Cuccinelli as the man who called for Virginia public schools to do away with any policies that would ban discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation. The DMV stopped taking the Employment Authorization Document — given to people who are temporarily in the United States and seeking employment — in September after a Bolivian immigrant scheduled for deportation used the document to prove legal presence while applying for a Virginia ID card. He later killed a nun in a fatal car crash.
Even though there is no causal link between using legal documents to get an ID card and the crash, the incident is being used to incite fear about legal immigrants on the road. Now a legal document showing proof of lawful presence can be declined by the DMV, which will prevent thousands of immigrants in the U.S. from legally getting driver's permits. Yeah, that makes sense. Kent Willis, executive director of the ACLU of Virginia, said yesterday, "This policy is about as irrational as it gets, and now the AG is trying to give it legal legs to stand on." Willis said he still hopes to convince Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell to change his mind. Clearly Cuccinelli and McDonnell have forgotten their immigrant roots, so good luck with that, Mr. Willis.
Read more at the Richmond Times-Dispatch.