NM Gov. Martinez: Illegals Exploit License Law

Thursday, 25 Aug 2011 09:14 AM

By Andra Varin

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New Mexico’s policy of allowing undocumented immigrants to obtain driver’s licenses is attracting illegal immigrants from all over the country, and they get the coveted documents by fraudulently claiming residency, critics say.

Those critics include Gov. Susana Martinez, who says there is no way to be sure where all the people who want to take the driving test really live.
“We don’t have any idea what kind of individuals we are giving these licenses to,” Martinez told The New York Times.

She pointed to several cases, including that of a man who advertised his services securing licenses for illegal immigrants in Spanish-language newspapers in New York.

New Mexico and Washington are the only states that allow illegal immigrants to obtain driver’s licenses. Proponents said it would cut down on the number of unlicensed and uninsured motorists.

But Martinez feels the system is being exploited. When a special session of the Legislature convenes in September, she will try to end the licensing of illegal immigrants.

Meanwhile, her administration has sent letters to 10,000 citizens of foreign nations across New Mexico, trying to get a handle on just how widespread the fraud problem is.


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