I am writing today to announce the closure of the New Mexico Independent. After three and a half years of operation in New Mexico, the board of the American Independent News Network, has decided to shift publication of its news…
New Mexicans may need a passport to fly in 2010
“One of Our 50 is Missing” is a popular and long-running feature in New Mexico Magazine. It features stories from New Mexicans who have mistakenly been identified as being from a country that isn’t the United States.
Now, this situation may be getting a little worse with new rules with “Real ID” photos as KOAT reported yesterday. The REAL ID Act, among other things, sought to establish new national standards for drivers licenses across all 50 states. Since New Mexico hasn’t reached those standards, New Mexicans hoping to hop on a plane to fly across the country may need to provide a passport as identification.
“Right now it’s a game of chicken, between the federal government and the state governments,” State Taxation and Revenue Department Secretary Rick Homans told KOAT.
The biggest issue is that New Mexico gives driver’s licenses to foreign nationals and illegal immigrants, which under the new law, would be illegal. The Obama administration has been promising to modify the law, but so far no action has been taken. Lawmakers in Washington have been so consumed with health care reform that the “Real ID” law issue has been put on the back burner.
KOAT reports that Ben Ray Lujan, who sits on the House Committee on Homeland Security, sent a letter to Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano asking about the status of the law and his concern for what it would mean for his constituents.