driver's license

Oregonians To Vote On Driver Cards For Undocumented Residents

On May Day last year Governor Kitzhaber wielded a pen in front of 2,000 cheering supporters and signed Senate Bill 833 into law.

The bill allows driver cards for those who can’t prove they’re here legally. It passed the 2013 legislature with bipartisan support.

But in the months following that May Day rally, opponents of the bill gathered just enough signatures to put the driver card issue to voters. The Oregon Department of Motor Vehicles estimates that the bill affects tens of thousands of Oregonians who can’t currently drive legally.

That’s why Reyna Lopez is at the Saturday farmers market in Salem with a clipboard in hand. Lopez works for Causa, a statewide advocacy group focused on immigrants rights. She’s leading a group of about 15 volunteers canvassing the city to encourage yes votes on Measure 88.

Lopez introduces herself to a woman who is on her way out of the market. A tiny, sleeping baby is strapped to the young mother’s chest, and she’s carrying two pints of bright strawberries.

“Hello,” says Lopez, cheerfully. “Today we’re talking to folks about Measure 88. Have you heard about it at all?

The woman says she doesn’t think so.

“Basically it’s a big human rights issue that’s going to be on the ballot this year,” says Lopez. She describes the measure as a way for people in the immigrant community to be able to drive legally to their jobs or to school.

The woman says she’s supportive and signs a pledge to vote yes while Lopez holds her strawberries for her.

“For me, it’s really about dignity and respect,” says Lopez. “For many families this is a constant worry on their minds. When they’re driving, they’re driving in fear. I just want to make sure that people are able to get where they need to go legally and safely, but also I just want to make sure that people have their basic transportation needs fulfilled.”

Driver cards won’t come with the same privileges as a state-issued driver’s license. It’s not meant to be an official ID, but solely to grant driving privileges. To get the card, drivers must pass the state test and provide proof of vehicle insurance.

Across town in Salem, Cynthia Kendoll is leading a meeting of the group Oregonians For Immigration Reform. The conference room is packed with opponents of the driver card law. She leads the crowd in a chant: “Vote no on 88!”

Kendoll says driver cards would roll out the welcome mat to undocumented workers.

“They chose to break our laws and come here illegally,” says Kendoll. “So when you paint the picture that they’re just coming here to work, they’re also breaking multiple laws. They’re also probably driving, and probably driving uninsured.”

The meeting became momentarily heated when a protester stood up to make a statement during a question-and-answer session.

“I’m an American, too,” said the protester, who spoke with an accent and added that he was an American citizen. Several people in the room shouted at him to leave, and he agreed to go. But as he walked out of the room, he turned back to the crowd and said, “You’re telling me that I’m the other.”

The meeting discussion following the tense exchange wasn’t so much about Measure 88 or whether undocumented people should be able to drive. Rather it was about the broader issue of immigration reform. And that’s really at the heart of this debate for opponents.

“The problem that we have to solve is illegal immigration,” says Kendoll. “Rewarding people that break the law by giving them a drivers card — we think it’s just wrong.”

Supporters of the driver card law say that it’s not up to states to enforce federal immigration law. Everyone needs a safe way to get to work or to school, says Reyna Lopez.

“People are driving; they’re taking the risk,” says Lopez. “The rest of the community is being put at risk when uninsured and unlicensed drivers are on the roads. Whether you’re pro-immigrant or not, it’s about public safety, it’s about safe roads.”

A yes vote on the referendum would uphold state law. A no vote would reverse the driver card law. If Measure 88 passes, Oregon will be the eleventh state in the nation to provide driving privileges to undocumented residents.

League of Women Voters - Linn County event Oct. 14th

Alert date: 
October 1, 2014
Alert body: 

The League of Women Voters of Linn County, along with the Albany chapter of the AAUW, will be holding a ballot-measures forum, on Tuesday, Oct. 14, at 7 p.m. at the Albany Public Library. Proponents and opponents will discuss Measure 88, on driver licenses for those who can’t prove legal residence...

Most of the evening will be devoted to questions from the audience.

If you live in the area - we encourage you to attend and participate.  Ask questions such as:

1.) Aren't we simply rewarding illegal behavior by issuing a driver card to people illegally in the country?

2.) Why should we issue driver cards so that people here illegally can more easily get to their jobs - it's illegal for them to work here, too - and they are taking jobs that 140,000 unemployed Oregonians would like to have.

3.) Isn't it true that the real motive behind the driver card is to legitimize the presence of people in the country illegally -  giving them a state issued ID and therefore providing a breeder document to open bank accounts, rent an apartment or perhaps, according to the TSA website - even board a plane?

4.) Isn't it true that a person in the country illegally can borrow a friends car (that has insurance), take a written and driving test, and walk away with a state issued ID - in the form of a driver card and NEVER purchase car insurance?  Insurance goes with the vehicle NOT the person - isn't that correct?

As frustrating as this is, always be polite and respectful - we gain no ground when we behave otherwise.

American lives traded for Obama's sickening agenda

American citizens are killed everyday on our roadways by illegal aliens driving drunk or on drugs.  In Oregon alone heart-wrenching cases beg to be acknowledged for the grief they have caused the loved ones left behind.  Often the perpetrators of such horrific accidents are repeat offenders.

I was shocked to read a new report from the Center for Immigration Studies examining the potential public safety impact of an executive action to benefit alien traffic offenders, one of the several directives reportedly being considered by the Obama administration.

Such a presidential directive would protect tens of thousands of illegal aliens from deportation each year. Since 2004, over 250,000 aliens whose most serious state or local conviction was a traffic offense were deported by ICE.

An amnesty for those “convicted exclusively of traffic crimes” would include those convicted of drunk or drugged driving, vehicular homicide, car-jacking, and joyriding.

The number of illegal aliens deported after drunk or drugged driving convictions (as their most serious offense) numbered 22,740 in 2013.

Clearly, this administration seems to find American lives of no value as they plot to completely unwind our immigration laws. 


Measure 88 should be voted down

At a time of heightened concern about U.S. immigration policy and the failure of Congress to enact meaningful immigration reform, it may seem at face value that it would be beneficial to allow undocumented immigrants the privilege of driving.

As we read about Oregon’s proposed driver card for those who cannot prove citizenship, it’s important to note that the card serves only as evidence of driving privileges — it doesn’t confirm identity or age as typical drivers licenses do.

Proponents argue this will grant those here illegally the opportunity to purchase insurance and provide a regulatory framework in the case of an accident.

But let’s get back to something we mentioned earlier. Driving isn’t a right; it’s a privilege. Granting undocumented immigrants the authority to drive, supporters say, will make the roads safer because the immigrants will purchase insurance.

While that’s a nice goal, Oregon would be doing a lot in the hopes that this happens. In New Mexico, uninsured rates didn’t noticeably decrease when the state began granting drivers cards to those who cannot prove their citizenship.

We cannot ignore the fact that driving is commonly tied to the ability to work, and while it may be the goal of Measure 88 supporters to help immigrants get to work, this law would instead perpetuate the use of undocumented immigrant labor.

Our nation is founded on immigration. We, as we always have been, are a melting pot. Before we allow undocumented immigrants the privilege to drive, though, we need to instead reevaluate our federal immigration policy. Because this law will encourage the hiring of undocumented workers with only a thin hope of actually helping public safety, we urge you to vote no on Measure 88.

Anti-driver's card rally lines up along Mission Street SE

Members and supporters of Oregonians for Immigration Reform lined the sidewalk of busy Mission Street SE on Saturday holding signs to encourage people to vote against Ballot Measure 88.

OFIR president Cynthia Kendoll said that it was meant to be a brief reminder to the public to vote "no" on the measure, or the Oregon Alternative Driver Licenses Referendum.

"Measure 88 is the citizen's veto referendum to overturn the Senate Bill 833 which gives driver's cards to people in the country illegally," Kendoll said.

Saturday brought a good turnout, much like Kendoll was expecting.

Prior to the rally, the group met at the Best Western Mill Creek Inn for a meeting and to hear from speaker Derek Hernandez, vice president of the western region of the National Border Patrol Council. The council is a union that represents non-supervisory border patrol agents.

"We don't query people on why they're here but we have great participation and we're really happy about that," Kendoll said.


Vote NO on 88 fall campaign kick-off meeting a big success

A standing room only crowd gathered to hear Border Patrol Council Union Vice President for the Western United States explain the connection between the recent border surge and the attraction of a state issued ID - in the form of a driver card - to people illegally in the United States.  His presentation was compelling in urging a NO vote on ballot measure 88.

Representative Sal Esquivel - Chief Petitioner on the referendum,  spoke of his disappointment in those lawmakers that support Legislation such as Ballot Measure 88, which is a clear violation of their oath of office.

Representative Kim Thatcher, also a Chief Petitioner on the referendum thanked everyone for their hard work.

After the meeting a FLASH RALLY was held out on the very busy Mission Street.  The honks and waves of support were very encouraging as we waved our signs and flags!

Visit our photo gallery if you were unable to attend the meeting.

Anti-driver's card rally set for Saturday in Salem

Come Saturday, rain or shine, the two groups responsible for challenging a state law that would have granted "driver's cards" to Oregonians who couldn't prove legal residency, will be rallying on a street in Salem to promote a no-vote on Measure 88.

It has been a long and contentious issue, and with less than 45 days until the November general election, Oregonians for Immigration Reform and the Protect Oregon Driver Licenses organization, are galvanizing their grass-roots supporters to demonstrate against the measure.

The two groups submitted enough signatures last October to the Secretary of State's office to qualify their referendum for the 2014 ballot. They were propelled into action last spring when the state Legislature approved a bill to grant limited-duration driver's cards (not licenses) to residents who were unable to prove their residency but otherwise complied with requirements for driving privileges and had resided in Oregon for more than one year. With the qualification of the ballot measure, the law was prevented from going into effect in January.

The bill, SB 833, had bipartisan support when the governor signed it in May 2013. It also was endorsed by numerous religious groups, agricultural interests and a few law enforcement personnel who saw it as a way to help educate new drivers, enable more of them to qualify for, and buy, car insurance, and help families meet daily obligations. Some viewed it as a means to make Oregon's roads safer for all.

But the OFIR and PODL groups believed otherwise, and criticized the Legislature for not allowing Oregonians to decide on what they see is an immigration issue.

To illustrate their point, on Saturday, before the sidewalk demonstration, the groups will host Derek Hernandez, vice president of the western region of the National Border Patrol Council. The NBPC is a union representing non-supervisory border patrol agents.

Jim Ludwick, a spokesman for OFIR, said the group is excited Hernandez has agreed to speak about other state-issued identification similar to Oregon's proposed driver's card and how it adds to the immigration crisis at the nation's borders. His position is that residents should vote "no" on Measure 88.

Cynthia Kendoll, OFIR president who recently returned from a border-patrol summit in El Paso, Texas, said she is hopeful the weather will hold out and there will be a strong show of support at the demonstration.

"The number of people really depends on the weather," Kendoll said. "But we're hopeful."

Rep. Sal Esquivel of Medford and Rep. Kim Thatcher of Keizer, who is running for the state senate, also will attend the meeting before the rally. Both are sponsors of the Veto Referendum on SB 833, which became Ballot Measure 88.

OFIR and PODL say they are staffed by unpaid volunteers who work to preserve the safety and well being of the state and nation. However, their campaign has received nearly $100,000 from 88-year-old Loren Parks, a Nevada resident who owns Parks Medical Electronics, Inc. in Aloha, who has financed myriad ballot measure petitions and campaigns since the mid-1990s. He is represented by Salem attorney Kevin Mannix, himself a chief ballot-campaign petitioner.

Oregonians for Immigration Reform and Protect Oregon Driver Licenses will meet at approximately 4:15 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 27 outside of the Best Western Mill Creek Inn, 3125 Ryan Drive SE, Salem. Participants are encouraged to bring American flags and take yard signs for the protest on Mission Street SE adjacent to the Costco parking lot.

NOTE:  The Parks contribution was for the referendum signature gathering campaign. Parks has NOT contributed to the PODL election campaign.

NOTE:  Supporters of Ballot Measure 88 have been given well over $200,000 by unions, businesses that benefit from an illegal work force and groups that advocate for illegal aliens.  Why was that not reported in this story?

Members of law enforcement community oppose driver card measure

David Cross writes on immigration issues and foreign national crime.  In his recently published opinion piece in the Bend Bulletin, he weaves together the layers of law enforcement support that Ballot Measure 88 has attracted.  Local, state and national law enforcement officers know that giving state issued ID to people in the country illegally is just plain wrong - it's as simple as that!

Derek Hernandez will be the special guest speaker at the Saturday, Sept. 27 meeting campaign kick-off meeting.



Law enforcement encourages a NO vote on 88

Protect Oregon Driver Licenses has garnered not only the attention, but the endorsement of law enforcement officers across the state - and the country!

Michael Cutler - INS Senior Special agent (retired) - well known, frequently published and a popular guest on numerous radio and TV shows, has stepped forward not only with his endorsement, but with a well penned Voter Pamphlet Statement, as well.

Derek Hernandez - Border Patrol Council Union Vice President for the Western United States has also endorsed our efforts to overturn SB 833.  His Voter Pamphlet Statement references the threats we all face by putting a state-issued ID into the hands of the those in the country illegally.

Learn more about all of our endorsers.

SPECIAL NOTE:  OFIR - PODL will welcome Derek Hernandez as our guest speaker at our big campaign kick-off meeting next Saturday, September 27 at 2:00pm.  We will get together at the Best Western Mill Creek Inn across from Costco in Salem.

If you have any questions, please call 503.435.0141 for more information.


Marion County GOP discusses Ballot Measure 88 this evening

Alert date: 
September 18, 2014
Alert body: 
The Marion County Republicans will meet this evening.  On the agenda - Ballot Measure 88!  Every Marion County Repubican is invited to attend!
September 18, 2014 at 7pm - 9pm
Peoples Church - Rooms A & B
4500 Lancaster Dr NE
Salem, OR 97305




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