The bill’s author, Democratic Senator Gil Cedillo of Los Angeles, says the measure would put California into conformity with the recently enacted federal Real I-D Law. Governor Schwarzenegger has insisted that licenses for illegal immigrants must have a different look. Cedillo says he’s been forced to agree. "The federal law is very clear: must have a distinct design or color. That’s what the governor’s asked for and that’s what we’re gonna give him. "
The licenses for illegal immigrants would be good only for driving purposes and could not be used as official identification. In floor debate, Republican Senator Tom McClintock said other nations deport their illegal immigrants and there’s really no need for California to license foreign drivers. "California already recognizes a valid foreign driver’s license as proof of competence to operate a motor vehicle in this state."
Senator Cedillo’s driver’s license bill now goes to the state Assembly.