Driver cards would attract more illegal immigrants

The Bulletin

Those who advocate giving driver cards to individuals who live in Oregon illegally ignore the broader issues associated with illegal immigration.

The U.S. population is 317 million and will increase to over 400 million by 2050. Seventy percent of the increase will be due to both legal and illegal immigration, according to Support U.S. Population Stabilization. We allow about a million individuals to come here legally each year. The environmental impact of this rapidly increasing population is significant.

The U.S. is already experiencing water shortages in various parts of the country. California, Arizona and Nevada are rationing water in many areas, and the water in the great Ogallala Aquifer, important to agriculture in the Midwest, is being “mined.” We are at risk of degrading the environment in our constant quest for more energy to keep up with the growing population. Witness the continuing controversy over fracking and the rapid spread of windmill generators in scenic environments. This is to say nothing of concerns about terrorists and drug cartels who wish to cross our porous borders.

There are many in the world who need help, but we cannot take them all in. It is estimated that about 70,000 will have entered illegally this year from Central America alone. The U.S. cannot continue to be a safety valve for the population excesses of other countries. Millions of taxpayer dollars are being spent to provide care for the immigrants, including payment for legal fees to guarantee due process.

The backlog of cases is so great that many are released into society with the hope that they will show up for a hearing. Most will probably be allowed to stay, which will draw thousands more next year.

The magnet that draws many of them is the promise of amnesty provided by the immigration bill passed by the Senate and the 2012 Obama presidential administrative amnesty action taken for young illegals already in the U.S. Ronald Regan supported amnesty for millions in 1986, but promised border security never materialized, and millions more have crossed the border illegally, or overstayed their visas. Sen. Ron Wyden, Sen. Jeff Merkley and President Obama champion the middle class but ignore the fact that more tax money to help immigrants places additional burdens on that middle class. We have thousands of homeless and unemployed citizens who could use that money.

We cannot continue to enable the millions who break into our country illegally. It weakens our rule of law and demeans the meaning of citizenship. Pew Research estimates there are over 160,000 individuals living in the state of Oregon illegally. This November, Oregon citizens will have an opportunity to vote whether illegal residents should be issued a driver card. This concept has been pushed by Gov. John Kitzhaber and many Democrats in the Legislature. Those who are in this country illegally should be denied this privilege as it facilitates their ability to take jobs, providing unnecessary competition for over 100,000 Oregon citizens who are unemployed. The flood of immigrants also results in lower wages and places stress on medical facilities and schools, which may already be overcrowded. Providing driver cards does not guarantee additional safety on the road and only serves to attract more illegal immigrants to the state.

If you were in the U.S. illegally, which states would you move to, those that would provide you a driver card, or those states that support the rule of law?