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FreedomWorks is pleased that Gov. Mark Sanford of South Carolina sent a letter today to Homeland Security Secretary Michal Chertoff explaining why South Carolina will not comply with the REAL ID Act. This law was passed without debate in Congress, and contains billions of dollars in unfunded federal mandates.
Gov. Sanford pointed out in the letter that South Carolina’s legislature passed a law that prevents the state from complying with this obtrusive federal law. He also wrote that the REAL ID itself is troublesome: "Real ID is poor public policy for any number of reasons, and we have some real questions as to whether the benefits in terms of security outweigh the costs in terms of time and money. We think the state legislature did the right thing last year when it said no to Real ID, and I'm going to keep working with Homeland Security and with other governors to keep this law from negatively impacting our state."
FreedomWorks joined with other organizations to oppose REAL ID, and members sent in hundreds of letters to their state lawmakers and the governor during the last week before the compliance deadline.
FreedomWorks President Matt Kibbe commented, "It is rare to see an elected official stand up on principle in the face of federal bullying. But Gov. Mark Sanford has done a courageous thing in resisting the implementation of REAL ID in South Carolina. We stand with him and the citizens of that state, and hope that all freedom-loving Americans will speak out against this awful law."
Gov. Sanford also made the following points in his letter to Secretary Chertoff.
- South Carolina's Department of Motor Vehicles has already met - on its own - roughly 90 percent of the benchmarks the federal government has laid out for making ID's more secure.
- Congress has not debated Real ID as this legislation did not see hearings in the House or Senate.
- Real ID is a more than $9 billion unfunded federal mandate that would cost South Carolinians $116 million over 10 years, and mean wait times of up to two hours at the DMV.
- Real ID presents privacy concerns for all Americans on a range of fronts.