MUST ACT NOW to Stop
the National ID Card
Right now, a conference committee of House and Senate
Republicans is deciding whether or not to do the
unthinkable: impose a national ID card on citizens of
the United States.
They must hear from us.
A national ID card would be Big Brother at its worst.
The entire lives of every American -- including medical
history, job history, marital history, financial
history, credit history, EVERYTHING could end up in a
central federal database. Your entire life at the
fingertips of faceless bureaucrats.
There is no greater threat to our personal security and
liberty than a national ID system.
John McCain has once again wandered off the reservation.
Under the guise of fighting terrorism, he and many other
Big Brother proponents in the House and Senate are
pushing hard to pass a back-door, defacto, national ID
card. This is an unprecedented violation of our privacy
rights guaranteed in the Constitution.
The prospects here are downright frightening. McCain and
his cohorts want to standardize state drivers’ licenses
at the federal level and link all state drivers’
databases. This monstrous power-grab by the federal
government would create the very real possibility of
adding technology such as radio frequency identification
chips to driver’s licenses, thereby enabling Big Brother
to track every movement a licensee makes.
READ THE ACTION TO TAKE BELOW!
We must act swiftly to avoid the tyranny of a national
We simply must make certain that “the McCain amendment”
be stripped from both versions of the “9/11
Recommendations Implementation Act”—Senate bill S. 2845
and House bill H.R. 10. The following facts about why a
national ID program should be avoided at all costs are
taken directly from an open letter to the House and
Senate that the American Policy Center co-signed with
over 50 other organizations.
**A national ID will not prevent terrorism in the United
States.** According to Privacy International, of the top
25 terrorist targets since 1986, 80% have long-standing
national identity card programs, and one-third of those
countries have cards with biometric identifiers. In
fact, the top target, Israel, has a national ID card
that uses biometric identifiers on the card. Yet such
cards have done nothing to stop devastating terror
attacks on those nations. Furthermore, identity cards
tell nothing about an individual’s intentions. Timothy
McVeigh and the beltway stalker would both have
qualified for a national ID card.
**A national ID system would divert resources from more
productive counter-terrorism measures.** One estimate of
the initial cost of such a program goes as high as $25
to $30 billion dollars, with another $3 billion to $6
billion per year to run it. Our limited resources could
be better spent on increasing border security and
dealing with the two-year backlog of intelligence
needing to be translated at the FBI.
**A national ID would depend on a massive bureaucracy
that would limit our basic freedoms.** A national ID
system would depend on both the issuance of an ID card
and the integration of huge amounts of personal
information included in state and federal government
databases. One employee mistake, an underlying database
error rate, or common fraud such as identity theft, now
rampant in the U.S., could take away an individual's
ability to move freely from place to place or even make
them unemployable until the government fixed their
**A national ID could require all Americans to carry an
internal passport at all times, compromising our privacy
and limiting our freedom.** Once government databases
are integrated through a uniform ID, access to and uses
of sensitive personal information would inevitably
expand. Law enforcement, tax collectors, and other
government agencies would want use of the data.
Employers, landlords, insurers, credit agencies,
mortgage brokers, direct mailers, private investigators,
civil litigants, and a long list of other private
parties would also begin using the ID and even the
database, further eroding the privacy that Americans
rightly expect in their personal lives. It would take us
even further toward a surveillance society that would
significantly diminish the freedom and privacy of
law-abiding people in the United States.
**Action to Take**
These are the Republicans who will decide our fate on
the national ID card issue. Call them, and tell them to
make sure any and all national ID card language --
including any standardization of state drivers’ licenses
-- be stripped from S. 2845 and H.R. 10 (the “9/11
Recommendations Implementation Act). We have only this
week and next to kill this monster. NOTE: It does not
matter if any of these folks are from your state or not.
They are about to make a decision that affects EVERY
American in EVERY state. All of them must hear from all
Sen. Susan Collins (ME): (202) 224-2523
Sen. George Voinovich (WY): (202) 224-3353
Sen. Norm Coleman (MN): (202) 224-5641
Sen. John Sununu (NH): (202) 224-2841
Sen. Pat Roberts (KS): (202) 224-4774
Sen. Mike DeWine (OH): (202) 224-2315
Sen. Trent Lott (MS): (202) 224-6253
Rep. Pete Hoekstra (MI): (202) 225-4401
Rep. Henry Hyde (IL): (202) 225-4561
Rep. David Dreier (CA): (202) 225-2305
Rep. Jim Sensenbrenner (WI): (202) 225-5101
Rep. Duncan Hunter (CA): (202) 225-5672