Sang. Co. Sheriff: Driver’s Licenses For Undocumented A “Split State” Issue

One Central Illinois law enforcement leader says he doesn’t understand why state lawmakers are moving to provide illegal immigrants with driver’s licenses.

A plan that would provide the ID’s for the estimated 250,000 people living in Illinois illegally is headed to the Senate floor.

Supporters say it would make Illinois roads safer with trained motorists required to carry insurance.

But Sangamon County Sheriff Neil Williamson says the measure is being pushed through under what he calls the “guise of public safety”, and says he’s not alone in opposing the plan:

WILLIAMSON: “There’s no question about it that it’s basically a split state on this issue. I’ve been in touch with our Sheriffs Association and it’s their feeling that any Sheriff that’s north of I-80, where a lot of the immigrants reside, sheriffs maybe support this initiative. And Southern Illinois sheriffs like myself, would be against it.”

Williamson says the initiative simply doesn’t make any sense to him.

Williamson says he welcomes immigrants of all nationalities, but he questions the need for providing driver’s licenses since mandatory insurance minimums have been in place for years.

Supporters of the change say those here illegally are driving. But without a license, they are unable to purchase coverage.

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