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LETTERS TO THE TIMES

Driver's License Law

October 18, 2003

Re "Driver's License Test for Schwarzenegger," Commentary, Oct. 13: Frank del Olmo must have experienced a different recall campaign than I and the rest of California witnessed. Gov.-elect Arnold Schwarzenegger understands political reality and common sense. His opposition to allowing illegal aliens to have driver's licenses proved to be popular, as the majority of the voters understand right from wrong. Taxpayers are fed up with paying for services for alien lawbreakers.

Giving illegal aliens driver's licenses will incur a risk to national security and more fraud.

The ridiculous argument that when an illegal alien gets a driver's license he or she will maintain auto insurance is an insult to one's intelligence. Once illegals obtain driver's licenses, many will continue the pattern of fraud that started when they entered the country illegally.

It is not immigrant-bashing to demand that those who obtain a California driver's license and government services be here legally. Once again, Del Olmo attempts to blur the line between illegal and legal immigration. Gov. Gray Davis tried to do the same and failed. Hopefully Gov. Schwarzenegger will follow the will of the voters and common sense.

Michael R. Smith

Riverside

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People worry that driver's licenses issued to illegal immigrants will be used to prove citizenship. Obviously it is desirable for any illegal immigrant to take and pass the test before taking to the road. An obvious solution would be to print "noncitizen" prominently on the issued license.

Nancy G. Voelker

Long Beach

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Regardless of the debate demanding more security measures to screen driver's license applications from illegal immigrants, Schwarzenegger should also keep this simple fact in mind: Low-income and high-accident-risk drivers simply cannot afford to purchase and maintain even the basic state-mandated minimum liability insurance policy. As a law-abiding citizen who has seen the "uninsured motorist" portion of my insurance bill skyrocket, I suggest a bold, new initiative: "Terminate" the uninsured motorist portion of insurance premiums in the state by establishing a small surcharge at the gas pump, earmarked for accident claims resulting from uninsured drivers. This surcharge would ensure that all drivers pay their fair share of insurance costs.

Rex Allen

Costa Mesa

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