Alaska Legislature Stops Real
ID Act Implementation
April 12, 2008
(SitNews) The Alaska Legislature approved legislation rejecting
implementation of the federal Real ID Act. Lawmakers believe
the federal law infringes on the fundamental right to privacy
of Alaskans and would effectively bring about a national ID card
system. The legislation SB202- opts Alaska out of REAL ID
by forbidding the funding of anything that would further REAL
ID compliance. SB202 is sponsored by Sen. Bill Wielechowski,
"The Real ID Act just goes too far," said Wielechowski.
"It turns a driver's license into a tracking card and tells
the federal government nearly everything you do from buying a
gun, entering a federal facility or just taking your family to
a national park. If we fail to stop the Real ID Act now, our
personal privacy will be gone forever."
The federal Real ID law was passed by Congress in May 2005 as
part of a "must pass" federal appropriations bill.
The law requires driver's licenses and state ID cards to carry
what is known as "common machine readable technology,"
and that means the government can swipe your card every time
you use it. The information can be accessed by all other states
and will be maintained by a private corporation. The information
could even be used by Canada and Mexico due to treaties the United
States has with those nations.
"Alaska has struck a blow for freedom and individual liberty",
said Bill Scannell, spokesman for The Identity Project. "Alaskans
know that REAL ID is an unfunded mandate from Washington DC that
does nothing for security while making Alaskans less free."
The Real ID Act if enacted-- could take on "Big Brother"
proportions. The federal legislation gives the Secretary of Homeland
Security the power to require biometric information to the card.
That means your fingerprints, a retinal scan - even your DNA
can be added to the card. Many gun owners are also concerned
it will be used to create a national gun registry. By opting-out
of REAL ID, Alaskans no longer need worry about this.
Alaska is not the only state rising up against the Real ID Act.
Eighteen other states have passed legislation similar to SB 202
and another eighteen are considering them. At least 600 groups
from Catholic Social Services to the Gun Owners of America are
opposed to the Real ID Act.
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