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No IDs for Illegals Act would ban Biden’s planned ID card system for undocumented immigrants called…

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No IDs for Illegals Act would ban Biden’s planned ID card system for undocumented immigrants called the Secure Docket Program

Rep. Jeff Van Drew (R-NJ2)

Republicans say this new type of ID card would be the worst since teenage Homer Simpson’s fake ID.


The Biden administration’s ICE (Immigrations and Customs Enforcement) is developing a new type of identification card for immigrants, including undocumented immigrants, at the U.S.-Mexico border.

Called the Secure Docket Program, each card would include the person’s name, photo, nationality, and a QR code linking to an online portal where they could access information such as their next scheduled hearing date with an immigration court.

The card could also be used as valid Identification by the TSA (Transportation Security Administration) when boarding an airplane. The TSA already lets undocumented immigrants fly under several different forms of identification, including a notice to appear before an immigration court, or even warrants for deportation or arrest.

(In April, GovTrack Insider covered the Crime Doesn’t Fly Act and the SECURE Flights Act, Republican bills that would discontinue arrest or deportation warrants as valid identification.)

ICE hopes to launch the Secure Docket Program cards by the end of 2022.

What the bill does

The No IDs for Illegals Act would ban federal funding for Biden’s possible planned Secure Docket Card identification system for undocumented immigrants, before it even gets off the ground.

It was introduced in the House on July 29 as H.R. 8632, by Rep. Jeff Van Drew (R-NJ2).

What supporters say

Supporters argue that when people arrive in this country in violation of federal law, they shouldn’t receive a taxpayer-funded item like this.

“Not only will this program allow illegal immigrants to travel by airfare, but will also make access to government benefits easier, which could ultimately lead to illegal immigrants being able to vote in our elections,” Rep. Van Drew said in a press release.

(At present, the card can’t be used to vote. It seems unlikely this would be possible in the future, either. In January, New York City became by far the largest municipality in the country to allow legal noncitizen permanent residents to vote, but in June a state Supreme Court judge struck the law down as unconstitutional. In New York, judges are elected; the judge in this case, Ralph Porzio, is a Republican. Federal law prohibits non-citizens from voting in elections for federal office.)

“The American people are struggling with the highest inflation in 40 years and record high food and gas prices under Biden’s presidency, yet this administration continues to make it worse by worrying about providing more rights to illegal immigrants instead of coming up with solutions to help our people,” Rep. Van Drew continued.

(To be clear, this new ID card would not be providing an additional “right” to undocumented immigrants. Rather, it’s essentially a tool of enforcement for existing immigration court actions.)

What opponents say

Opponents counter that, contrary to Rep. Van Drew’s claim, the card wouldn’t “provide more rights” to undocumented immigrants. Rather, it’s an administrative means of ensuring the government keeps a list of all these people and knows who they actually are — aims that Republicans would ostensibly support, when they use phrases like former President Donald Trump’s frequent claim that “we don’t know” who the people coming over the border are.

“The ICE Secure Docket Card (SDC) program is part of a pilot program to modernize various forms of documentation provided to provisionally released noncitizens through a consistent, verifiable, secure card,” an ICE spokesperson told CNN. “The secure card will contain a photo, biographic identifiers, and cutting-edge security features to the mutual benefit of the government and noncitizens.”

“Specifics of the program are still under development, but a primary goal of the SDC is to improve current, inconsistent paper forms that often degrade rapidly in real world use.”

Odds of passage

The bill has attracted 12 cosponsors, all Republicans. It awaits a potential vote in the House Judiciary Committee.

Odds of passage are low in the Democratic-controlled chamber.

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This article was written by GovTrack Insider staff writer Jesse Rifkin.

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