Court ruling sees hundreds of immigrants protected from deportation applying for driver’s licenses.
Today saw a frenzy of activity at Motor Vehicle Divisions throughout the state as the estimated 20,000 young immigrants that are shielded from deportation through Obama’s executive order in Arizona lined up to apply for driver’s licenses. In west Phoenix, lines were long an hour before doors opened and the line erupted with cheers when they ultimately did.
Obama’s immigration policy: Judge issues injunction
Following a judge’s decision to bar the enforcement of Gov. Jan Brewer’s policy to deny illegals licenses, today saw the first day for many that they became eligible to drive legally for the first time. While today saw lines, it’s expected that in the coming weeks thousands will likely apply for licenses making for a busy end of the year for DMV employees.
The governor has vowed to fight the injunction that ruled her policy “likely unconstitutional.”
“It is outrageous that Arizona is being forced to ignore long-standing state law and comply with a flawed federal court mandate that requires the state, at least temporarily, to issue driver’s licenses to individuals whose presence is in violation of federal law, as established by the United States Congress,” she said late last week, according to comments she made to the Los Angeles Times. “At stake in this case are the fundamental issues of constitutional law and state sovereignty. Arizona has the constitutional right and authority to enforce state statute. This right must be protected. It must be defended. And as long as I am governor, I will do exactly that.”
Arizona put Brewer’s policy into force following president Obama’s executive order in 2012 that shielded thousands from deportation not the newer order that shields as many as five million. That order shields those under 30 who arrived before their 16 birthday and can prove that they haven’t left the county at any time and are presently enrolled in high school or in possession of a diploma or equivalent. The order also protects those that served in the military.
Those that are applying for licenses will still need to take both a written test as well as a road test.