Politics Week in Review

LOCAL NEWS FEB 26, 2020, MICHAEL GOOT, The Post-Star

U.S. Rep. Elise Stefanik, R-Schuylerville, last week once again expressed her opposition to the state’s “Green Light Law,” which grants driver’s licenses to undocumented immigrants.

Federal, state, county and local law enforcement officers and officials from Immigration and Customs Enforcement held a news conference in Troy last Thursday to cite their concerns about the law.

Stefanik called it“unacceptable” that Gov. Andrew Cuomo has barred federal law enforcement officials from accessing information about drivers in the Department of Motor Vehicles database.

“Today, law enforcement officers were extremely clear — the Green Light Law will result in injury or worse to ICE, (Customs and Border Protection), and Border Patrol officers who are trying to do their job to keep our communities safe by stopping human and drug trafficking across our border and heinous crimes against children,”she said.

The Department of Homeland Security announced earlier this month that, because of the Green Light Law, the Trump administration is cutting off New Yorkers from“trusted traveler”pre-screening programs that allow people to bypass customs and passport checks.

Cuomo issued his own statement after meeting with President Donald Trump, saying he would be willing to authorize access to the Department of Motor Vehicles database with removal of Social Security numbers, which could reveal undocumented status, and increase penalties for unauthorized use of the DMV database.

“We can provide trusted travel information. We can provide the automobile export industry information. What they really want and what we can’t provide is use of the DMV data for immigration purposes. Period. Their extortion and bullying will not work in New York,”Cuomo said in a news release.

Assemblyman Dan Stec, R-Queensbury, joined members of the Assembly Minority Conference on Monday to also voice their concerns about the law.

“Blocking the federal government from accessing the DMV files of illegal’s applying for licenses is not only dangerous but reckless,”Stec said in a news release.“We should not be making the work of law enforcement and those who are protecting us any harder. It’s my hope that this issue is resolved quickly.”

Independence Party endorses Stefanik, Stec

Stefanik and Stec have been endorsed by the New York Independence Party.

“Elise has been committed to getting bipartisan results for her constituents since day one in office. She works with anyone, regardless of party, on behalf of hardworking North Country families, veterans, small businesses, and farmers,”said Frank MacKay, chairman of the Independence Party of New York, in a news release.

Regarding Stec, Independence Party Vice Chairman Tom Connolly said in a press release,“We need elected officials that are willing to buck the trends and do what’s right for everyday New Yorkers. That describes Dan Stec perfectly.”

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