New California law to give driver's licenses to illegal immigrants: backers argued they'd buy auto insurance. How'd that work out?
So did it do what the Democrats said it would? And was it worth $141 million? Let's take a look.
Backers of the bill assured Californian citizens that the proposed law would spur illegal aliens to pass a skills test and buy auto insurance. Because it's well known that illegals really want to obey the law, and the only reason they don't is...um...it's not important.
Nearly a year-and-a-half after the bill took effect, there’s no evidence it did anything like what its supporters claimed.
The bill, signed by Democrat Gov. Jerry Brown, took effect at the beginning of 2015. Since that time more than half of all drivers' licenses issued in the state have gone to illegal immigrants, and the DMV estimates that at least 1.4 million illegal immigrants will apply for a license in the next three years.
It was part of a bundle of measures designed to make California friendlier toward illegal immigrants. The state hired 1,000 temporary DMV workers, opened four new processing centers and extended hours in an effort to deal with the anticipated flood of applicants. Almost half a million illegals applied for licenses in the first three months alone.
Predictably the law--and a three-year, $141 million program to implement it--did not provide for any mechanism to find whether illegal immigrants actually bought insurance. Indeed, even though state law requires all drivers to have insurance, the new law does not compel illegals to show proof of auto insurance to get a license.
Which is really strange, cuz I have to show proof of insurance to get my license renewed. And I'll bet you do too.
To make it even easier for illegals to get auto insurance, the state provided a special Low Cost Auto Insurance Program for low income people, with premiums subsidized by taxpayers. Plans provide minimal liability coverage with annual premiums as low as $241. By comparison, legal residents who have to buy insurance from regular insurance companies pay an average of just under $2,000 per year.
In 2015 alone, 650,000 licenses were issued to illegal immigrants, but just 11,348 Californians bought Low Cost Auto Insurance policies. Critics say the insurance pays victims less than regular policies, leaving them with insufficient protection in the case of accidents caused by illegal immigrant drivers.
One person opposed to the program is Don Rosenberg, whose son was killed in San Francisco by an unlicensed, uninsured, illegal-immigrant driver who had entered the country illegally but was granted "protective status." [lib-speak for "the emperor permitted him to stay in the country, despite having entered illegally] But when a legislature is controlled by Democrats, even sound arguments against a badly-conceived program never get a hearing, and will be overriden by party discipline.