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Erie County, NY - County Clerk Files Suit Over New York Immigrant License Law

Published on: July 9, 2019 08:00 PM
By: AP
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FILE - FILE - In this March 22, 2016 file photo, Then Assemblyman Michael Kearns speaks in the Assembly Chamber at the Capitol in Albany, N.Y. Kearns, who is now the Erie County Clerk, says he'll refuse to grant driver's licenses to immigrants who entered the U.S. illegally, despite the state's passage of a law allowing it. APFILE - FILE - In this March 22, 2016 file photo, Then Assemblyman Michael Kearns speaks in the Assembly Chamber at the Capitol in Albany, N.Y. Kearns, who is now the Erie County Clerk, says he'll refuse to grant driver's licenses to immigrants who entered the U.S. illegally, despite the state's passage of a law allowing it. AP

Erie County, NY - A county clerk in western New York filed a lawsuit Monday challenging a new state law authorizing driver’s licenses for immigrants who are in the country illegally.

Erie County Clerk Michael Kearns’ challenge, filed in federal court, seeks an injunction blocking the law while its constitutionality is reviewed.

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Clerks in many other upstate counties have expressed similar concerns about the law, and clerks in Rensselaer, Niagara and Allegany have joined Erie in saying they won’t follow it.

The lawsuit names Gov. Andrew Cuomo and state Attorney General Letitia James, both Democrats, as defendants in their official capacities, along with the commissioner of the state’s Department of Motor Vehicles.

Twelve states already have similar laws, which supporters say allow immigrants to get to work, raise children and go about their daily lives. The measure, dubbed the “greenlight” bill, passed the state’s Democrat-led Legislature last month and was promptly signed into law by Cuomo.

Kearns argues the law is unconstitutional and forces county clerks to violate their oaths of office by granting licenses to immigrants who have broken immigration laws. He announced last month that workers at Buffalo-area motor vehicle offices won’t grant driver’s licenses to those here illegally and will instead send applicants to a state-run auto bureau in Syracuse, more than two hours away by car.

“The law compels county clerks across the state to be an instrument to violate federal law,” Kearns said in a statement announcing the lawsuit.

Supporters expected the legal challenge. James’ office reviewed the bill before it passed and has said it is constitutional.

“The legislation is well crafted,” James said in a statement last month, adding: “We will vigorously defend it.”

Cuomo raised a separate legal issue about the law when discussing it on public radio Tuesday, saying he remains concerned that federal immigration authorities might sue the state to gain access to state DMV databases to target immigrants in the country illegally.

Lawmakers inserted language into the law designed to prevent that possibility, but Cuomo said he worries that might not be enough.



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Read Comments (6)  —  Post Yours »

1

 Jul 09, 2019 at 08:48 PM Reb Yid Says:

Finally. The rebellion begins. Next up: BDS against New York!

2

 Jul 09, 2019 at 10:36 PM Democrats care more for illegal aliens than for American citizens Says:

Cuomo and the democrats are a bunch hypocrites they write a law witha clause forbidding access to the federal government who have a legitimate law enforcement rwason for gaining access to the database as these ilkegal aliens are moatly criminal as they have enterd the US illegally which is a federal crime, they them turn around and write a law which unconstitutionaly allows them to give Congress Presidents Trumps confidential state tax returns of which when he filed them it was illegal to hand them over they change the law to circumvent that, so illegal aliens they make laws to protect them and American citizens they make laws to give out their private information.

3

 Jul 10, 2019 at 12:17 AM Liepa Says:

Cuomo and Letita, vote them both out of office !

4

 Jul 10, 2019 at 07:25 AM qazxc Says:

Reply to #2  
Democrats care more for illegal aliens than for American citizens Says:

Cuomo and the democrats are a bunch hypocrites they write a law witha clause forbidding access to the federal government who have a legitimate law enforcement rwason for gaining access to the database as these ilkegal aliens are moatly criminal as they have enterd the US illegally which is a federal crime, they them turn around and write a law which unconstitutionaly allows them to give Congress Presidents Trumps confidential state tax returns of which when he filed them it was illegal to hand them over they change the law to circumvent that, so illegal aliens they make laws to protect them and American citizens they make laws to give out their private information.

Run-on rambling sentences much?

5

 Jul 10, 2019 at 02:16 PM StevenWright Says:

Reply to #4  
qazxc Says:

Run-on rambling sentences much?

So the best way to refute someone's comment is to publicly ridicule his grammar ability?

6

 Jul 10, 2019 at 07:59 PM hashomer Says:

Reply to #5  
StevenWright Says:

So the best way to refute someone's comment is to publicly ridicule his grammar ability?

Would you respond the same way if the comment be directed against your Zionist idols? Or would you then join the song of ridicule? Huh, Mr Wrong?

7

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