Four high-profile and controversial pieces of legislation have been unveiled, and some pre-filed, by state lawmakers this week for the 2015 Georgia General Assembly session. Consider the following:
* Sen. Josh McKoon, R-Columbus, pre-filed Senate Bill 6 to block access to driver’s licenses for any illegal immigrant whose deportations have been halted through a “deferred action program” or who have received work permits. Since President Barack Obama may issue a controversial executive order extending “deferred action” to millions of illegal aliens, proponents says this is a common sense measure to help protect Georgia’s legal workforce, as well as the unemployed, from job competition by countless thousands of illegals (many with limited or no English-speaking skills).
“The Georgia Road Safety & Driver’s License Integrity Act” also requires that fingerprints be provided to the Department of Driver Services by non-citizens, and displayed on any temporary driver’s license or official state ID card. Proponents cite this as a homeland security component in an era of increased terrorism.
U.S. Sen. Johnny Isakson, during his re-election announcement, was asked by a reporter what he thought about denying driver’s licenses to “deferred action” illegal immigrants. The Republican senator sympathized with McKoon’s bill and declared “look at Oregon” – citing a definitive Nov. 4 vote in that Democrat-dominated state. Isakson noted it was the will of Oregonians, by a two-thirds majority vote, to ban driver’s licenses to illegals. It underscores, he said, that the policy enjoys widespread support in unexpected places.
* State Rep. Allen Peake, R-Macon, pre-filed House Bill 1 — also known as “The Haleigh’s Hope Act”– after a Georgia youngster whose parents have been high-profile advocates of allowing the medical usage of oil harvested from the marijuana plant.
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