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PostWatch: An irregular correction to the Washington Post

Brought to you by Christopher Rake


Monday, December 02, 2002
5:37 PM

T.R. Reid writes about a Mexican ID card called matricula consular in Identifying a Way To Help Mexicans Living in the U.S.:

The matricula is a Mexican government document that certifies the name and age of the bearer. It has been used, in various forms, for more than a century. But it caught on in a big way only this year, after Mexican President Vicente Fox's government redesigned the card and launched a campaign to win its acceptance as a valid form of ID in the United States.

Fox wants to obliterate any meaningful distinction between illegal and legal Mexican immigrants. The card helps. I last blogged about it on Aug. 6, in reference to a story about mobile Mexican consulates distributing the cards. In today's story:

Over the past eight months, more than 80 cities, about 600 police departments and thousands of businesses have formally recognized the Mexican matricula for identification, according to the Mexican Foreign Ministry. Thirteen states have agreed to accept the card as sufficient ID for a driver's license application, without regard to the applicant's visa status.

Some people might wonder if this is such a great idea. So this is say a 20-graf story, and here is the entire rebuttal case:

The matricula is not popular with conservatives urging a crackdown on illegal immigration. Rep. Tom Tancredo (R-Colo.), for example, has denounced it as "a ploy to keep illegals in this country." The real message of the long lines outside Mexican consulates, Tancredo said, is that "the immigration laws of the United States are null and void."

Ouch! That hurt. Back to the cocoon.

The Immigration and Naturalization Service has taken no stand on the matricula. The agency says that it is Mexico's prerogative to issue identity cards to its citizens, and it is up to local governments and agencies to determine whether to recognize the cards for identification....

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