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Update: PASS ID Act

July 29, 2009 - by Isabelle Cutting

Following up on a previous post, the Senate Homeland Security and Government Affairs Committee approved the PASS ID Act today, a step towards replacing its unpopular and defunct predecessor, the 2005 REAL ID Act.

Dispute within the committee rallied around the bill’s provisions relating to boarding airplanes and identification, and whether birth certificates should be presented when applying for such an ID card.

Subsequent compromises, which allowed S.1261 to move forward, are outlined in more detail here

Briefly, the PASS ID Act sets out minimum requirements for State driver’s licenses and ID cards regarding what data is included and what documentation must be presented when receiving such ID cards. This standardization, from which no states are exempt, would disallow a Federal agency from accepting a State driver’s license or identification card unless the State is materially compliant to the provisions of this legislation. S.1261 also seeks to repeal title II of the REAL ID Act of 2005 in order to address many of the privacy and security concerns previously raised in opposition to that legislation.

More information regarding the content of the bill and the legislative lineage from which it came can be found here, in my previous post.

Here are also some more up-to-date links regarding the bill:

  • Reps. Lamar Smith, Jim Sensenbrenner, Peter King, and Darrell Issa’s op-ed on the Bill Washington Post
  • Ideological Purity and the Debate of the National ID Huffington
  • An immigration perspective ILW
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