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Illegals may get driver’s licenses in Illinois

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How a new policy would mesh with the federal Real ID law remains to be seen.

Congress passed Real ID in 2005, but has repeatedly delayed full implementation as states have complained about the burden of compliance.

Rep. F. James Sensenbrenner Jr., Wisconsin Republican and author of Real ID, wasn’t available for comment Tuesday, a spokeswoman said.

The current deadline is Jan. 15, though Ms. Kephart said that likely will have to be pushed back again because the Homeland Security Department’s compliance office has been cut to the bone, and it couldn’t even handle implementation.

Ms. Kephart said states that have moved to grant licenses see themselves as trapped.

“I think you’re seeing them concerned that the president is going to smack their hands for not complying with his view of what immigration should look like,” she said. “I think they’re feeling like they don’t have a choice at this point. They’ve seen what happens to states when they refuse, and they’re certainly not going to fight that in the driver’s licenses realm.”

About the Author

Stephen Dinan

Stephen Dinan can be reached at

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