For more information contact: Joan Nichols 651-29X-XXXX
ST. PAUL – This week the Minnesota House of Representatives unanimously passed a bill (HF 988) to prohibit the implementation of the REAL ID Act.
“The bill prevents the Department of Public Safety from taking any steps to implement or plan for implementation of the federal REAL ID Act of 2005," said Rep. Mariani, chief author of the legislation. “Our citizen’s rights and their pocketbooks should not be at the mercy of the Federal government. If the Federal government decides to pass a law that will cost Minnesota millions of dollars, then they should pay for it. If that law runs the huge risk of making private information about every Minnesotan accessible in one huge database, then they should give us strong guarantees that the data will remain private and safe from others.”
To date, 18 other states have rejected the federal government's coercion of turning their resident's information over to federal control. REAL ID would require storing whatever data the Washington D.C. wants to collect about us in one massive - and expensive - database which runs the real risk of creating a "one stop shop" for identity thieves to access our personal information from anywhere in the nation.
“We know nothing about this database because it has yet to be created,” said Rep. Mariani. “We do not even know who will eventually control it, who will have access to it, how safe it will be, and what further information will be required to be collected about citizens. It’s important that bureaucrats in D.C. don’t take over our state’s driver’s license for their purposes. All across our nation, in a rare showing of unity; conservative and liberals, Republicans and Democrats, gun owner advocates to domestic abuse activists agree together that REAL ID is a dangerous and terribly flawed law.”
Today the bill will be voted on by the Minnesota Senate.