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Preventing terrorists from obtaining state-issued identification documents is critical to securing
America against terrorism. As the 9/11 Commission noted, “For terrorists, travel documents are as important as weapons.”
The 9/11 Commission Report: Final Report of the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks upon the United States, at 384 (2004).
Secure driver’s licenses and identification documents are a vital component of a holistic national security strategy. Law enforcement must be able to rely on government-issued identification documents and know that the bearer of such a document is who he or she claims to be. REAL ID is a coordinated effort by the states and the Federal Government to improve the reliability and accuracy of state-issued identification documents, which should inhibit terrorists’ ability to evade detection by using fraudulent identification.
The 9/11 Commission recommended that the Federal Government work with other layers of government to solidify the security of government-issued documents. Securing state-issued identification documents is a common-sense national security and law enforcement imperative, which also helps to combat identity fraud and illegal immigration.