This legislative session a number of issues clearly show how the desires of citizens and non-citizens in Minnesotans directly confront the imposition of Federal Law. The easiest example is the quest for Marijuana legalization and in addition drivers licenses for undocumented people.
Questions about non-citizen in Minnesota has been an active concept nearly since the state’s inception, and the indigenous population is very well acquainted with this fact. Governor Tim Walz (DFL-MN) a resident of Mankato clearly knows the largest mass execution in US history occurred in 1862 in Mankato, when 38 native men suffered the ultimate imposition of state power and were hanged. We expect when he delivers his State of the State address this point will be broached. It also highlights the significance of his selection of running-mate of Rep Peggy Flanagan (DFL-St Louis Park) and her eventual ascension to the Lt Governor’s position.
As people are grappling with the issues associated the immigration and attempting to establish legality, rights, and privileges some seem stuck, mainly Republicans, on the first point, legality. The problem is laws change and the timing of the laws always occurs after the fact and then the law is applied moving forward. When immigration was a simple exercise northern Europeans came in easily without much question. After the immigrating population stemmed from other parts of the globe, like Ireland (Catholic) and Italy (Catholic) then the Federal government wanted to restrict the passage and hence, places like Ellis Island, New York City were set up to regulate the flow to a greater extent. But don’t forget there was a cheaper passage through Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada that accomplished the same mission, and many of those people migrated to the United States as well.
The definition of what is “legal” is a concept without much salience other than a pejorative application of the people born here only a few generations different from the class of immigrants. It is a very Waspish (White Anglo-Saxon Protestant) idea, which is being perpetuated to protect the white, Caucasian minority from being uprooted from its societal dominance. The problem is newer immigrant populations do not hold the same ideals, religions or birth rates and the white population is in rapid decline.
Drivers Licenses for Non-Citizens Moves Forward in the House
HF 1500 is rapidly headed to the House Floor after a stop in the Government Operations: Subcommittee on Elections, which is necessary because of the ability to use a DL as a means of verification for voting eligibility. Once it passes there it will be on pace for a floor vote, but the legislation is not finding similar support in the House, in fact, the issue has not even had a hearing.
This is not a new issue by any stretch. Here is a document created by House Research in 2004 that addresses a wide array of issues. On page 65 of this document, you can see how it used to be in Minnesota. https://www.house.leg.state.mn.us/hrd/pubs/noncitizen.pdf
Once HF 1500 passes the House, it will be sent to the Senate for concurrence, which by all indications is unlikely, and it may not even be put up for a vote. The difference between the two parties here in Minnesota is drastically different, but such is not the case in other states.
During the various committees, we have heard that twelve states have already passed a law similar in nature. Those are California-2013, Colorado-2017, Connecticut-2014, Delaware-2015, Hawaii-2016, Illinois-2013, Maryland-2013, New Mexico-2016, Nevada-2014, Utah-2005, Vermont-2019, and Washington-1993, and the District of Columbia-2015 and Puerto Rico-2014
Its clear most of the states listed are controlled largely by Democrats, although Colorado has switched majorities over the course of time. If you look at one state Utah, which is clearly conservative having a large Mormon population and strong western “rugged individual “mentality you will find the principal advocate in 2005 was Sen Carl Bramble (R-16). Bramble ran for Governor against John Huntsman (R-UT) because he wasn’t conservative enough.
Republican legislators might want to look west to understand the idea of having safer roads is better than dogmatic isolationism.