U.S. National Biometric ID Cards Coming Soon

A dream of governments worldwide has long been to make people carry identification papers or cards, but the United States has always rejected direct attempts to institute such a program. That may be about to change, according to the Wall Street Journal:

Lawmakers working to craft a new comprehensive immigration bill have settled on a way to prevent employers from hiring illegal immigrants: a national biometric identification card all American workers would eventually be required to obtain.

Under the potentially controversial plan still taking shape in the Senate, all legal U.S. workers, including citizens and immigrants, would be issued an ID card with embedded information, such as fingerprints, to tie the card to the worker.

The ID card plan is one of several steps advocates of an immigration overhaul are taking to address concerns that have defeated similar bills in the past.

The uphill effort to pass a bill is being led by Sens. Chuck Schumer (D., N.Y.) and Lindsey Graham (R., S.C.), who plan to meet with President Barack Obama as soon as this week to update him on their work. An administration official said the White House had no position on the biometric card.

“It’s the nub of solving the immigration dilemma politically speaking,” Mr. Schumer said in an interview. The card, he said, would directly answer concerns that after legislation is signed, another wave of illegal immigrants would arrive. “If you say they can’t get a job when they come here, you’ll stop it.”

The biggest objections to the biometric cards may come from privacy advocates, who fear they would become de facto national ID cards that enable the government to track citizens…

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  • 5by5

    Yeah, and the idiots are going to base it on easily-hackable RFID chips so any criminal can just swipe the damn thing and get himself a new life.

    I'm no luddite, but computer technology isn't the right tool for every job, any more than a hammer is.

    This will be a boon to identity thieves.

    Not to mention how this more basically violates the whole spirit of our Constitution and the people's right to privacy in the 4th Amendment.

    The Soviet Union is the “Show me your papers!” place, not America.

    • ebwolf

      RFIDs hackable (ears perk up)?

  • emperorreagan

    This is a load of bullshit. The government has had a simple tool for cracking down on illegal workers – increase the fines on corporations that hire them to make it economically disastrous for the serial offenders.

    • ebwolf

      They also need to target those large-scale employers of IM's. Most of the enforcement sweeps target small employers, such as the contractor who picks up two or three day-laborers, while the biggest abusers are left alone.

      • emperorreagan

        I saw a documentary last year that implied that some of the big employers like Tyson hired enormous numbers of illegal workers and had some sort of understanding with the immigration authorities where they would turn over a few occasionally, basically for show. I wonder how many major corporations have some sort of gentleman's agreement with the immigration authorities.

        • ebwolf

          I've seen it in the flesh. Immigration started doing stings in my county.
          They wait where day workers gather, let a contractor pick some up, and then ticket them (I don't remember the exact fine per worker, but its upwards of 1k), and impound the truck or van if the contractor can't pay. Meanwhile, a large factory nearby employs dozens without ever being touched.

  • Tricia

    Horrible idea. Why not just identify the illegals and ship them out of our country? Why do the legal, working Americans have to be fingerprinted and identified??? I wouldn't even let the schools/police (on “child safety” day) fingerprint my children — I bought a child I.D. set myself, took the card to the cop shop, they rolled my kids prints, and the prints CAME HOME WITH ME. Thankfully, I never needed either I.D. kit, but every parent should have one for each child, with identifying birthmarks, fingerprints, (done as mentioned above!), recent pictures, pulled hair specimens (DNA) with root attached, etc. The only people TRACKING Americans should be their parents!!

  • Ed

    They can keep my card and stick it up thier A$$, Stop taking our freedom from us. Its already illegal to be in this country without the proper papers. So round up every illegal and send them back where they came from. If found in this country again Kill them……

  • Ed

    They can keep my card and stick it up thier A$$, Stop taking our freedom from us. Its already illegal to be in this country without the proper papers. So round up every illegal and send them back where they came from. If found in this country again Kill them……