U.S. House of Representatives
Committee on the Judiciary
F. James Sensenbrenner, Jr., Chairman
For immediate release
Contact: Jeff Lungren/Terry Shawn
November 20, 2004
Sensenbrenner Statement on 9/11 Legislation
WASHINGTON, D.C. - House Judiciary Committee Chairman F. James Sensenbrenner, Jr. (R-Wis.) released the following statement today regarding the status of legislation responding to the 9/11 Commission’s work:
“We have put together a bill that still needs some work; thus I am pleased the Speaker will allow the conferees to continue their efforts to produce a bill that improves the security of the American public. This legislation is a response to the problems identified in the 9/11 Commission Report.
“A key issue in the negotiations was whether or not drivers licenses should be issued to illegal aliens. Realizing that the 19 9/11 hijackers had 63 validly-issued U.S. drivers licenses, the 9/11 Commission wisely recommended, ‘The federal government should set standards for the issuance of birth certificates and sources of identification, such as drivers licenses. Fraud in identification documents is no longer just a problem of theft.’ (Report, p. 390) Regrettably, the Senate thus far has been hell-bent on ensuring illegal aliens can receive drivers licenses, regardless of the security concerns.
“At the outset, House Republicans said that we would evaluate the merits of the provisions based on whether they enhanced the security of the American people. Unfortunately, the Senate has refused to consider many of the provisions, tagging them as ‘extraneous’ or ‘controversial.’
“We must consider these provisions in order to be faithful to those who lost loved ones on 9/11 and to the work of the 9/11 Commission. I will continue to negotiate with the House and Senate conferees to enact a good bill, but not one that fails to learn from the tragedy of 9/11.”