Assemblyman Raj Mukherji (D-33) testified in front of the Assembly Homeland Security and State Preparedness Committee to support driver’s licenses for undocumented immigrants, claiming the issue is “about public safety.”Â
â€œYou know, this bill is not just about human dignity for this portion of the immigrant population in our state,” Mukherji testified one week ago and a video was produced by the NJ Assembly Democrats.
“Itâ€™s not just about integrating the undocumented immigrants in our state into society and, by extension, into our economy, which has worked fairly well for the dozen states and the District of Columbia that has already done this.”
According to the Wall Street Journal, New Jersey is home to approximately 463,000 undocumented immigrants and roughly 153,000 would apply for a driver’s license within the first three years of new legislation being passed.
While the matter has garnered some support among Assembly Democrats, their Republican counterparts have largely opposed the issue and Gov. Chris Christie, also a Republican, has said he would veto the matter if it was ever makes it that far.
Nevertheless, Mukherji, argues the issue is about public safety since immigrants are already driving on the roads without driver’s licenses as it is, further stating the notion that they won’t be able to purchase car insurance is untrue.
â€œItâ€™s about public safety. And, if these members of our immigrant community are already on the roads and theyâ€™re already operating motor vehicles ,then why wouldnâ€™t all want them licensed, with vehicles that are registered, and insured?
â€œAnd with all respect to our predecessor panel, itâ€™s an absolute falsehood that undocumented immigrants wonâ€™t have access to car insurance or that that is a red herring.”
“In fact, California actually subsidizes its low cost insurance program and markets it specifically to this immigrant community, in order to maintainâ€¦ in order to maintain some stability of rates and insure that, if there are accidents, that theyâ€™re less likely to occur when drivers have been tested; when theyâ€™ve undergone the same requirements that we all had to go through to get our driverâ€™s licenses.”