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PostWatch: An irregular correction to the Washington Post

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Tuesday, January 21, 2003
11:21 PM

Mexican ID Update... I've blogged about matricular consular cards, issued by the Mexican embassy and Mexican consulates and used by many illegal immigrants as entre to bank accounts, apartment leases, etc. The following is from Washington Times... talk about burying the lede, this is wayyyy down there:

Last week, in a letter to Secretary of State Colin L. Powell, 12 House members questioned the propriety of the cards, describing them as an "issue of enormous significance that has massive implications for the nation."

So here's the problem:

"The most important thing to understand about these Mexican matriculas is that they are almost absolute proof that the bearer is an illegal alien," said Dan Stein, executive director of the Washington-based Federation for American Immigration Reform. "Legal immigrants can get valid U.S. documents, like state-issued driver's licenses, while visitors can prove their identity with a passport and a valid visa. The only people who would need these consular-issued IDs are illegal aliens," Mr. Stein said.

Then there's this:

Aside from tacitly recognizing the presence of people who are violating the law, Mr. Stein said the U.S. government — in allowing the cards to be used as identification — has placed critical national security matters in the hands of the foreign governments that issue the cards. "We know that corruption is prevalent in the Mexican government, and yet we are relying on a chain of faceless Mexican bureaucrats to vouch for the identities of millions of people, about whom the only thing we know for certain is that they've broken our immigration laws," he said.

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