On Monday, New York state lawmakers passed a bill that will allow illegal immigrants to obtain a driver’s license. Governor Andrew Cuomo quickly signed the bill into state law.
A Democrat-controlled state Senate was responsible for passage of the bill on a 33-29 vote. But, all six legislators from Long Island voted against the bill for fear it could prove costly in their districts during the next election cycle. Opposing senators also noted a growing issue with MS-13 gang influence in the state.
“We are treating the people who have broken our law, who are criminals” the same as law-abiding citizens, GOP state Sen. Thomas O’Mara told the New York Post. “This legislation will lead to more illegal immigration.”
Cuomo requested that the state’s Solicitor General, Barbara Underwood, review the bill for possible safety concerns, but threatened to veto it if he disagreed with her assessment, the Post noted. New York’s Attorney General Tish James, however, proclaimed the bill legally binding.
A recent poll from Siena reported that constituents of NY opposed the bill 53 to 41%. Some 55% of independent voters were against the measure. Only 40% of suburban voters were in favor of it, while upstate voters were only 35% in support of the law.
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