SENATE DEMOCRATS STAND UP FOR NEW HAMPSHIRE AGAINST REAL ID

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact: Sen. Peter Burling

Phone: 603 271-3067

Email: peter.burling@leg.state.nh.us

Contact: Sen. Maggie Hassan

Phone: 603 271-2118

Email: maggie.hassan@leg.state.nh.us

May 4, 2006

CONCORD , NH -Senate Democrats today fought for HB 1582, legislation withdrawing New Hampshire from participating in a national identification card system, to pass as originally introduced.

A surprise effort to amend the bill into a study commission passed the Senate with just Republican votes.

"This amendment completely gutted the bill," stated Sen. Peter Hoe Burling, D-District 5. "We are moving on a fast track towards REAL ID, and this was our one chance to strongly voice our opposition to this misguided plan."

The federal REAL ID Act was attached to a Katrina spending bill, and was never referred to a committee or given its own hearing in Washington. REAL ID will require NH residents to wait in long lines at the DMV and wait four to six weeks for new licenses.

"The federal government is forcing an obligation on states that is unknown in scope, potentially impossible to meet, and certainly unaffordable," stated Sen. Peter Burling. "The Real ID Act is an unfunded mandate. We need to be true to our 'Live Free or Die' motto, be true to our citizens, and be true to ourselves, and pass HB 1582 and opt out of the federal REAL ID Act."

"The REAL ID Act gives the federal government unfettered discretion to build an intrusive national ID system that could weaken our security," concluded Sen. Maggie Hassan, D-District 23. "We need a full, open hearing at the national level so that the people's voices may be heard on the appropriate balance between privacy and security."