May 10, 2005
America is hours away from implementing universal measures of identification for every citizen of this nation. Today, the U.S. Senate will be voting
on the Real ID Act (H.R. 418 RFS) which has been quietly slipped into an $82 billion dollar appropriations bill for "defense, the global war on
terror and tsunami relief."
Libertarian Party Calls on the U.S. Senate to Remove H.R. 418 RFS from the Appropriations Bill
Libertarian Party Executive Director Joe Seehusen stated, "The Real ID Act was snuck onto the Senate floor without debate. If passed, it will not
only create a national I.D. system, but a national citizen database for use and abuse by our federal bureaucracy. While both republicans and
democrats talk of freedom and democracy, their vote for this bill will put our great nation in league with the authoritarian regimes of the past."
There is still time to take action against this act; you may contact your Senator directly by
This id card is another step closer to the government expecting unquestioning obedience.
Mr. MOORE of Kansas. Mr. Chairman, I rise today in opposition to H.R. 418 , the REAL ID Act of 2005.
As a member of the 9/11 Commission Caucus, I strongly supported passage on December 7, 2004, of S. 2845, the National Intelligence Reform Act of 2004.
That legislation took some much-needed and long-overdue steps toward strengthening the system of intelligence sharing and analysis in the United
The bill implemented the recommendations of the 9/11 Commission Report, a comprehensive collection of analyses and suggestions for improving the
Nation's intelligence system, in order that we might never experience another 9/11.
H.R. 418 , if enacted, would repeal some provisions of the National Intelligence Reform Act of 2004.
It would rob States of the ability to issue driver's licenses and identification cards as they see fit, and further subjects the States to unfunded
mandates to conform their driver's licenses and identification cards to federal standards.
Police forces around the Nation are notably opposed to H.R. 418 . They have grave security concerns surrounding the driver's license provisions of
this legislation; the job of law enforcement is made easier when the state Department of Motor Vehicles database contains information on undocumented
As a former district attorney, I place a high priority on assisting law enforcement however possible.
The asylum provisions included in this legislation are unnecessary, and will not enhance our national security.
The provisions needlessly restrict the standards by which motives for persecution would qualify for asylum.
I believe such a move could potentially exacerbate and multiply human rights abuses around the world by making it more difficult for victims of such
abuses to seek refuge in the United States.
Opposition to H.R. 418 includes a vast array of organizations, from the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops to the American Conservative
Union to the National Council of State Legislatures.
I believe strongly in protecting our great Nation from whatever threats exist to it. I do not believe, however, that H.R. 418 is a step in the
direction of improving national security.
Here's what they're spending the money on:
Here is what the bill would do in summary
REAL ID Act of 2005 - REAL ID Act of 2005 - Title I: Amendments to Federal Laws to Protect Against Terrorist Entry - (Sec. 101) Amends Immigration
and Nationality Act (INA) provisions concerning asylum to: (1) authorize the Secretary of Homeland Security, in addition to the Attorney General, to
grant asylum (retroactive to March 1, 2003); (2) require asylum applicants to prove that race, religion, nationality, membership in a particular
social group, or political opinion was or will be (if removed) at least one central reason for their persecution; and (3) provide that an applicant's
testimony may be sufficient to sustain this burden of proof only if the trier of fact determines that it is credible, persuasive, and fact-specific.
Requires corroborating evidence where requested by the trier of fact unless the applicant does not have the evidence and cannot reasonably obtain it.
Authorizes a trier of fact, considering the totality of the circumstances and all relevant factors, to base credibility determinations in asylum cases
on the: (1) demeanor, candor, or responsiveness of the applicant or witness; (2) inherent plausibility of the applicant's or witness' account; (3)
consistency between the applicant's or witness' written and oral statements; (4) internal consistency of each such statement; (5) consistency of
such statements with other evidence of record (including the Department of State's reports on country conditions); and (6) any inaccuracies or
falsehoods in such statements regardless of whether they go to the heart of the applicant's claim. States that there is no presumption of credibility
but that, if no adverse credibility determination is explicitly made, the applicant or witness shall have a rebuttable presumption of credibility on
Makes this Act's provisions regarding proof requirements and credibility determinations in asylum proceedings applicable to other requests for relief
Limits judicial review of determinations regarding the availability of corroborating evidence.
Removes the numerical limit on the number of aliens granted asylum who may become lawful permanent residents in any fiscal year (currently set at
10,000). Strikes a provision setting refugee admission numbers for persons subject to persecution for their resistance to coercive population control
Repeals provisions of the Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act of 2004 (IRTPA) requiring a study and report on terrorists in the asylum
(Sec. 102) Amends the Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act of 1996 (IIRIRA) to authorize the Secretary of Homeland Security
(the Secretary), in the Secretary's sole discretion, to waive all legal requirements as necessary to ensure expeditious construction of certain
barriers and roads at the U.S. border. Makes the Secretary's decision effective upon publication in the Federal Register. Gives U.S. district courts
exclusive jurisdiction to hear causes or claims arising from actions or decisions by the Secretary pursuant to this section. Limits such causes or
claims to those alleging a violation of the Constitution. Authorizes appellate review only upon petition for a writ of certiorari to the Supreme
(Sec. 103) Expands the grounds of inadmissibility and deportability due to terrorist or terrorist-related activity to include aliens who: (1) are
representatives of terrorist organizations or political, social, or other groups that endorse or espouse terrorist activity; (2) are members of
designated terrorist organizations; (3) are members of organizations that engage in specified acts of terrorism; (4) endorse or espouse terrorist
activity or persuade others to do so; or (5) have received military-type training from or on behalf of any organization that at the time was a
Expands the definition of "terrorist organization" to incorporate a broader range of underlying activities.
Makes this section applicable to removal proceedings instituted, and grounds of inadmissibility occurring, before, on, or after the enactment of this
(Sec. 104) Authorizes the Secretary of State or the Secretary to conclude in such Secretary's sole unreviewable discretion that specified
terrorism-related grounds of inadmissibility shall not apply to an alien, including those grounds applicable to: (1) representatives of groups whose
public endorsement of terrorist activities the Secretary of State has determined undermines U.S. efforts to reduce or eliminate terrorist activities;
(2) spouses or children of aliens inadmissible on terrorist grounds for activities occurring within the last five years; (3) aliens providing material
support to organizations or individuals that have engaged in terrorist activity; or (4) groups that fall within the definition of "terrorist
organization" simply by virtue of having a subgroup consisting of two or more individuals that engages in specified terrorist activity or related
planning. Prohibits the Secretary of State from exercising such discretion after removal proceedings have been instituted.
Requires the Secretary and the Secretary of State to provide annual reports on application of this section to the House Judiciary, International
Relations, and Homeland Security Committees and the Senate Judiciary and Foreign Relations Committees, and to provide such reports within one week of
applying this section to a group.
(Sec. 105) Expands the grounds of deportability due to terrorist activity to include aliens who would be inadmissible on terrorism-related grounds.
Makes this section applicable to: (1) removal proceedings instituted before, on, or after the date of enactment of this Act; and (2) grounds of
inadmissibility, excludability, deportation, or removal occurring or existing before, on, or after such date.
Repeals overlapping deportation provisions of the IRTPA.
(Sec. 106) Bars inadmissible arriving aliens from seeking judicial review of removal orders through habeas corpus, mandamus, or other extraordinary
Imposes a similar bar on denials of discretionary relief and orders against criminal aliens, with an exception for petitions for review concerning
constitutional claims or questions of law.
Establishes the INA's judicial review provisions as the sole avenue for reviewing claims arising under the United Nations Convention Against Torture
and Other Forms of Cruel, Inhuman, or Degrading Treatment or Punishment and for challenging removal orders.
Requires petitions for review filed under pre-IIRIRA law to be treated as if filed under the INA as amended by this section. States that such
petitions shall be the sole and exclusive means for judicial review of orders of deportation or exclusion.
[edit on 23-7-2005 by TrueLies]