Massachusetts Suffering More Crime by Not Complying with REAL ID Legal Status Check

By Janice Kephart on April 11, 2012

A few weeks ago I received a call from Fox News/Boston about increasing reports of crimes committed by illegal aliens with Massachusetts-issued driver's licenses. Investigating how illegal aliens were getting legitimate licenses, Fox News found my report on REAL ID compliance and noticed that Massachusetts is one of only five states not actively checking legal status before issuing driver's licenses. Checking legal status is required by the REAL ID Act, which sets minimum standards for driver's license issuance in order to protect legitimate identities from identity fraud and to increase national security by making it difficult for terrorists and those seeking to circumvent the law to assimilate into communities with a state-issued ID.


A similar issue came to a head in June 2010 when the Massachusetts state legislature considered requiring a driver's license to register a car given the estimated 100,000 to 200,000 illegal aliens in the state who were able to register their vehicles without a driver's license at the time. The Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles (RMV) said it was looking at ways to close the loophole, but it did nothing then and still hasn't.

Fox News decided to break the story earlier than expected when the Massachusetts RMV decided to re-issue a driver's license to President Obama's uncle, Onyango Obama, after he had it suspended for drunk driving. The RMV did so even though Obama is in the United States illegally and awaiting deportation.

For more on the effects of Massachusetts' failure to comply with REAL ID and the additional hardships it will cause for residents at the airport come next January when REAL ID compliance takes effect, see my interview on Fox News.