Tuesday, March 9, 2010

ID Card for Workers Is at Center of Immigration Plan

Passport USAImage by clappstar via Flickr

clipped from online.wsj.com

Customs and Border Protection agent Jesus Gomez checks a passport at the vehicle crossing at the San Ysidro Port of Entry in California.

Lawmakers working to craft a new comprehensive immigration bill have settled on a way to prevent employers from hiring illegal immigrants: a national biometric identification card all American workers would eventually be required to obtain.

Under the potentially controversial plan still taking shape in the Senate, all legal U.S. workers, including citizens and immigrants, would be issued an ID card with embedded information, such as fingerprints, to tie the card to the worker.

"It is fundamentally a massive invasion of people's privacy," said Chris Calabrese, legislative counsel for the American Civil Liberties Union. "We're not only talking about fingerprinting every American, treating ordinary Americans like criminals in order to work.
Mr. Schumer said employers would be able to buy a scanner to check the IDs for as much as $800.
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