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When Legislators Represent Noncitizens, Illegal Is Legal

September 05, 2003

Re "Senate OKs Licenses for Illegal Immigrants," Sept. 4: I thought that our elected representatives in the state Senate and Assembly were supposed to represent their constituents. I don't understand why they are instead representing illegal immigrants by giving them the right to obtain driver's licenses. I thought you had to be a citizen to vote.

Especially enlightening is the prediction by insurance industry experts that illegal immigrants obtaining driver's licenses are not likely to obtain state-mandated liability insurance. It galls me, as a citizen, that elected representatives to state government prefer to represent criminals over law-abiding citizens.

Lawrence Turner

Glendora

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Now that the bill to give driver's licenses to undocumented immigrants has been approved, it will be on Gov. Gray Davis' desk for his signature. Davis' failed governorship appears doomed whether or not he signs this legislation into law. Placating one side on this issue in a last-ditch effort to salvage his administration is not good leadership, which ironically is what he needs to demonstrate now. Davis has already indicated that this legislation is a bad idea by vetoing two similar proposals at the urging of top law enforcement officials. Let's see if he is prudent and says no to supporters of this bill. This would prove that he does have some backbone left and cares about California and the legacy of his governorship.

Joe Rystrom

Toluca Lake

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Regardless of the benefits of allowing illegal immigrants to become legal motorists, it is inconceivable that our state Senate and Assembly would condone a direct violation of our laws. Illegal immigrants should be deported, not encouraged to stay. Other than in medical emergencies, we should discourage them from entering our country by denying them all citizens' benefits.

Andrew J. Gero

Los Angeles

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After 62 years in the state of California, just what is it that I don't understand about the word "illegal"?

Tim Ryan

Simi Valley

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California lawmakers create a law granting legal standing for a societal privilege (versus a "right") to illegal noncitizens. George Orwell would be proud.

Ken Artingstall

Glendale

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