Arizona Governor Jan Brewer announced that the State of Arizona would refuse to grant driver's licenses to those individuals in her state who were granted temporary legal immigration status through the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals policy.
Governor Brewer was joined in this position by Governor Rick Perry of Texas and Governor Dave Heineman of Nebraska.
Governor Brewer previously sponsored a bill in Arizona that attempted to criminalize undocumented immigration status. The US Supreme Court struck down the major provisions of that bill.
In her recent statement, Governor Brewer revealed her underlying motivations against immigrants.
It is not based on being illegal in the United States, as all DACA recipients will be lawfully present in the United States.
It is not based on security concerns, as all DACA recipients will have background clearances. Persons with felonies or even significant misdemeanors need not apply.
DACA recipients are all young, arrived in the US before their 16th birthday, have a good record, have graduated from or attending a school in the United States.
How could Governors Brewer, Perry and Heineman deny these individuals the right to a driver's license?
For reasons of prejudice, racism, and fear.
The reactions of these leaders are very revealing, as they are directed to people of Hispanic origin that are lawfully living within their respective states.
It is possible to respect the Governors' disagreement with the DACA policy. However, to deny legal rights to lawfully present Hispanics displays a motive far more sinister and more disturbing than a disagreement on immigration policy.
The Governors would be well-served to remember they represent the people in their state, including the Deferred Action Childhood Arrivals.
To deny these lawfully present individuals will raise an equal protection issue that is far larger than the Grand Canyon.