FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Patrick Dixon
Libertarian Party of Texas Chair
SB 9 would bring Texas into compliance with the unconstitutional federal REAL ID Act
AUSTIN – May 9, 2011 – Senate Bill 9 will be heard by the Texas House’s Homeland Security & Public Safety Committee on Tuesday, May 10, 2011 at 8:30 a.m. at the Texas Capitol Room E2.026. The Libertarian Party of Texas opposes SB 9, which would bring Texas into compliance with the unconstitutional and unfunded federal Real ID Act of 2005.
The Real ID Act calls for national standards for state-issued driver licenses and non-driver identification cards, supposedly for securing national borders and protecting against terrorism. It would nationalize driver licenses, effectively turning them into national ID cards, which would be required to fly on commercial airlines, enter government buildings and open bank accounts, to name a few. Many states have passed resolutions or binding legislation to not participate in the program, and many bills introduced in Congress have called for its repeal.
SB 9 would result in Texas’s participation in this controversial program. The Department of Public Safety (DPS) would be empowered to collect and maintain sensitive biometric information on Texans. To counter the necessary increase in spending for implementation, SB 9 calls for a fee-based driver license system (“Transportation Tax System”). The Libertarian Party of Texas opposes SB 9 for these reasons:
- It is invasive and furthers America’s evolution into a “surveillance state” with more power to monitor its citizens – a direct violation of the Constitution
- The private sector has the potential to exploit SB 9 to collect data on customers
- A single database of sensitive information puts Texans at higher risk for identity theft
- It is ineffective to fight terrorism, as fraudulent identity cards can easily be obtained
- It will be a huge financial burden on the Texas state government
“There was a time when people pledged their lives, their fortunes, and their sacred honor for Liberty. The Libertarian Party, alone among all political parties in Texas, continues this tradition. It remains to be seen if voters in Texas will join us in protesting to state legislators on this continued encroachment on our privacy and individual rights,” says Patrick Dixon, the Chair of the Libertarian Party of Texas.
The Libertarian Party of Texas invites all libertarians to join us at the committee hearing on Tuesday. If you are unable to join, you may also voice your opposition by contacting the Homeland Security & Public Safety Committee members. It is very important for our government to know that Texans oppose Real ID in our state. You may email the following committee members by visiting their member pages at www.house.state.tx.us/:
- Rep. Sid Miller – Committee Chair – 512-463-0628
- Rep. Allen Fletcher – Vice-Chair – 512-463-0661
- Rep. Marva Beck – 512-463-0508
- Rep. Lon Burnam – 512-463-0740
- Rep. Joe Driver – 512-463-0574
- Rep. Dan Flynn – 512-463-0880
- Rep. Barbara Mallory Caraway – 512-463-0064
- Rep. Aaron Pena – 512-463-0426
- Rep. Armando Walle – 512-463-0924
The Libertarian Party is the third-largest political party in Texas, and stands for constitutional government, free markets, civil liberties and peace. You can find more information on the Libertarian Party of Texas at www.lptexas.org.