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"Drivers license in the State of New Mexico. Social security not necessary. 100% guarantee."
the 2003 law that made it possible for undocumented immigrants to receive licenses.
people in America illegally obtain driver's licenses in New Mexico, then use them to move throughout the country
The men from Poland had settled near Chicago, but New Mexico offered what they coveted - driver's licenses without any proof of their immigration status.
New Mexico has issued more than 82,000 licenses to foreign nationals. Because of the way the system is set up, the state has no breakdown of how many of them were in the United States illegally.
Democrat Bill Richardson was governor then. He supported making driver's licenses available to undocumented immigrants, and extolled the societal benefits of more drivers with insurance during his campaign for president in 2008.
A handful of Republican legislators tried but failed to repeal New Mexico's law in 2005.
Eleven states once had laws allowing undocumented immigrants to obtain driver licenses. Eight of those states, including Maryland, Oregon and Hawaii, have overturned those laws. New Mexico, Washington and Utah are the three states were the law remains.
On December 3, 2008, then-President-elect Barack Obama designated Richardson for appointment to the cabinet-level position of Commerce Secretary. On January 4, 2009, Richardson announced his decision to withdraw his nomination because of an investigation into improper business dealings