Studies show giving licenses to immigrants, even those who are undocumented, actually improves safety.
The Trump administration on Tuesday ordered a review of state laws that allow undocumented immigrants to obtain driver's licenses.
The move comes after New York and New Jersey recently adopted laws that require and enable undocumented drivers to obtain licenses like the rest of the population. The Trump administration has also criticized a provision of New York's new law that prevents the department's investigations arm from accessing its state DMV records.
"Laws like New York's greenlight law have dangerous consequences that have far reaches beyond the DMV," a Homeland Security spokesperson told the Daily Caller on Tuesday. "These types of laws make it easier for terrorists and criminals to obtain fraudulent documents and also prevent DHS investigators from accessing important records that help take down child pornography and human trafficking rings and combat everything from terrorism to drug smuggling."
Chad Wolf, acting Homeland Security secretary, instructed his department to study how state laws allowing undocumented people to obtain drivers licenses may impact its immigration enforcement and other investigations.
And while the department claims the laws make it harder to stop child pornography and drug smuggling, actual studies show having the laws in place improves safety.
A 2017 report in the National Academy of Science's official peer-reviewed journal found that California saw a drop of between 7% and 10% in hit-and-run accidents after enacting its law.
Other states also saw a reduction in road fatalities and uninsured motorist after adopting similar policies. And more people with the ability to drive with a license typically has meant more purchasing and commerce.
The DHS press office did not immediately respond to an inquiry as to the basis for claims about child pornography and drug smuggling.
Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.