Illegal immigrants may soon be able to get an Oklahoma driver’s license. Supporters of SB669, including Gov. Kevin Stitt, say it would reduce certain types of crime, raise $2.5 million in state revenue, and reduce auto insurance premiums.
Detractors say the proposed law is a stepping stone to granting illegals the right to vote.
“Giving Illegal aliens a driver’s license is beyond absurd,” Don Spencer, president of the Oklahoma Second Amendment Association, told The Epoch Times.
SB 669 has been voted out of committee and is now ready to go before the Oklahoma Senate. The bill, authored by Oklahoma City immigration attorney and Democratic State Sen. Michael Brooks-Jimenez, changes state law to allow illegal immigrants to obtain a driver’s license.
Brooks-Jimenez did not return a call for comment about the bill.
Spencer posted a video on his YouTube channel of Brooks answering questions about the bill in a meeting of the Aeronautics and Transportation committee. At that meeting, Republican State Sen. Joe Newhouse asked Brooks-Jimenez if the bill would allow an illegal immigrant to receive a driver’s license.
“If they’re paying their fair share, if they’re paying their taxes arm-in-arm with the rest of us, then they should have that opportunity,” Brooks-Jimenez replied.
Spencer confirmed that a March 16, 2023, letter acquired by The Epoch Times came from the governor’s office.
The letter expresses Stitt’s support for HB2114, the companion to SB669 in the Oklahoma House of Representatives, and lists potential benefits and safeguards in the law.
In addition to increased revenue and lower insurance premiums, the letter states that the law specifically forbids voting by illegal immigrants and requires all applicants to comply with state law before getting a license.
The letter also claims that 16 states and the District of Columbia allow non-citizens to drive. The letter lists Florida, Utah, Virginia, and Maine among the states that allow illegal immigrants to drive.
According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, as of March 13, 2023, 19 states and the District of Columbia permitted non-citizens to drive legally.
Florida and Maine were not on the list of 19, while Utah and Virginia were listed.
The letter also claims that the bills require elections board personnel to communicate with tax offices and others to ensure illegal immigrants do not receive licenses.
Stitt’s office did not respond to emails or telephone calls seeking comment by press time.
Spencer said he was not swayed by the letter’s assurances.
“We expect one bureaucracy to communicate with another bureaucracy?” Spencer asked.
According to Spencer, the crux of the issue is Brooks-Jimenez’s use of the term “fair share.” He said the problem is not tax revenue but a violation of the law.
“After the word ‘illegal,’ nothing else matters,” Spencer said.
He said the law may prohibit illegal immigrants from voting now, but once it’s been established that at least some of them are paying taxes, Brooks-Jimenez and other attorneys will also begin pushing for the vote.
Spencer added that he has questions about the ethics of an immigration attorney sponsoring a bill directly affecting his current and potential clients.
“I have to give [Brooks-Jimenez] credit. Look what he’s pulling off, he’s pulling off a Joe Biden special right here in Oklahoma,” Spencer said.