Thursday, May 8, 2014

Identification and Travel Documents

The following was written in April 2014, as part of a response to the Campaign for Liberty's 2012 survey questionnaire for candidates running for federal office.

16. Will you oppose any legislation that requires states and citizens to participate in a National Identification Card program?

     Yes, I will oppose any legislation that requires states and citizens to participate in a National Identification Card program.
     I will vote to repeal the portion of the REAL ID Act of 2005 which established and implemented regulations for the security standards of driver's licenses and identification documents.
     I do not believe that anyone who is born in the United States or becomes a citizen should be required or expected to carry identification or travel documents on them at all times. I will not vote to support any proposed federal laws – nor urge states to adopt laws - that requires businesses to scan individuals' driver's licenses when checking their age to confirm alcohol and tobacco purchases, nor will I support laws providing for requiring travel or identification documents to contain either bar codes, computer chips, or tracking devices. If holograms and embedded ink are good enough for our money, they should be good enough for our identification documents.
     I believe that Americans would be appalled if they discovered that Native Americans are required to carry blood quantum cards due to federal law (the Indian Reorganization Act of 1934). Although tribes accepted this requirement 80 years ago, and the law allows them autonomy over determining quantum laws so as to limit benefits for descendants of Native Americans with low blood quantum, there is no reason that anyone born in the United States should be expected to carry such a document. It is the relic of a regrettable, racist era in American history, and it was not voluntary because it was one of few choices offered to a conquered and besieged people.
     I will oppose federal legislation requiring employers to participate in the e-Verify program - under the Department of Homeland Security's Basic Pilot Program – because such legislation only serves to turn businesses into police departments.
     Additionally, I will oppose federal legislation to require presentation of proof of residency and identification documents in order to vote; these effectively amount to Reconstruction-era poll taxes. I will sponsor federal legislation to abolish such legislation enacted by the states as serious civil rights violations which diminish the freedom of not only members of racial and ethnic minorities but poor and homeless people of all races.
     I believe that any and all federal mandates to purchase and/or carry identification and travel documents should only follow appropriate constitutional amendment (although in that case I will vote against my own amendment) or else invoke a financial obligation on the part of the party making the command, i.e., the pockets of members of Congress themselves.

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