Lars Larson says Oregon drive card could be used to board a plane; is he right?

Article author: 
Dana Tims
Article publisher: 
PolitiFact Oregon
Article date: 
Tuesday, October 7, 2014
Article category: 
Oregon Issues
Article Body: 

Conservative radio talk show host Lars Larson makes no bones about where he stands on Oregon’s Measure 88 – the driver card initiative.

The claim:

He recently sent us a series of emails, which he said verified one of his assertions about the cards: That the Transportation Security Administration will accept "driver privilege" cards as valid identification to board a commercial aircraft.

Could the ballot measure’s own language be wrong? PolitiFact Oregon decided to check.

The analysis:

Several newspaper opinion pieces, including one written by former Hillsboro Police Chief Ron Louie, say driver cards will not be valid for boarding an airplane.

Causa Oregon, a leading immigrant-rights group, agrees. "Ballot Measure 88 clearly states that it will be issued only to grant driving privileges, and prohibits use of the driver cards for anything other than the listed purposes," spokesman Erik Sorensen wrote us in an email...

A TSA spokesman in Oregon wrote to Larson, according to an email he shared with us: "Driver’s licenses are a valid form of ID for TSA."

We contacted a TSA official on our own, Nico Melendez, a Western Region TSA spokesman in California.

Melendez, after checking with Oregon officials and administration attorneys, said in a telephone interview: "State-issued driver cards would be acceptable forms of identification for our document-checkers at the airport. At this point, the understanding is that a card like this would be an acceptable form of identification."

Whether an air passenger shows a TSA representative a driver’s license or driver card doesn’t matter, he said.

"What we are doing is verifying that the person who shows the card is the person who is traveling," Melendez said. "It’s not an immigration check."

The ruling:

We rule Larson’s claim True.