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Most New Yorkers oppose granting driver licenses to illegal immigrants
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16:12, November 08, 2007

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Most people in New York state are against Governor Eliot Spitzer's plan to grant driver licenses to illegal immigrants, said a poll by cable news channel NY1 that was released on Wednesday.

Some 55 percent of state voters say they are opposed to the new three-tiered plan even after it was revised to what Spitzer considered as having included more security measures.

Only 29 percent support the plan, while 16 percent did not respond.

The governor hopes to offer three levels of licenses, one for citizens and legal residents valid for domestic travel, another for travel to Canada without a passport, and a third for driving that would be available for all, including illegal immigrants.

New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg is against the proposal. Senator Hillary Clinton seemed positive, but was challenged by her contenders on the issue in the presidential debate.

Critics point out that the hijackers involved in the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks carried licenses, and warn foreign passports needed for the licenses could be forged.

Spitzer argued, "security means knowing who is here. It means having information about people, not pretending that a million people in New York State don't exist."

There are nearly 20 million people in New York state, a large number of whom are immigrants.

Source: Xinhua

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