The Trump Administration has long been fixated on keeping tabs on all immigrants, whether they have citizenship or are undocumented. In a recent controversial move to expand its scope, the U.S. Census Bureau has gathered state-level driver’s license information and driving records from the Department of Motor Vehicles in four states, including South Carolina, Iowa, South Dakota, and Nebraska. The first state in the list to provide private data to the Census Bureau was Nebraska, which agreed to share its records back in November.
Last year, the Trump Administration wanted 2020 census forms to ask participants if they were a citizen or not. The attempt to locate immigrants who might be undocumented was challenged, and the question was quashed before it could be implemented. The recent move to team up with the U.S. Census Bureau has been seen as an attempt to make up the ground lost after the 2020 census question was challenged. It is not known at this time if any other states will agree to give driver data freely to the White House in what could be a plan to remove undocumented immigrants from across the country or to redistrict zones in favor of GOP candidates.
Although, the information’s ability to easily locate undocumented immigrants is not clear. Nebraska and the other three states already require a driver’s license or state ID holder to prove that they legally reside in the state before the card can be issued. In theory, any driver’s license data shared with the U.S. Census Bureau would only pertain to people who have already been confirmed as citizens or legal permanent residents.
For more information about how driver’s license information might be used for immigration-driven policy changes under the Trump Administration, you can click here for a full article from NPR. (Log-in and subscription information might be required.)
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