Consular Identification Cards: Domestic and Foreign Policy Implications, the Mexican Case, and Related Legislation
LIBRARY OF CONGRESS WASHINGTON DC CONGRESSIONAL RESEARCH SERVICE
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The current debate about consular identification cards in the United States has centered around the matricula consular, the consular identification card issued by Mexican consulates to Mexican citizens in the United States. In May 2003, the Treasury Department issued regulations allowing acceptance of the cards as proof of identity for the purpose of opening a bank account, and the cards are accepted for other purposes as well, including issuance of drivers licenses. Consular identification cards raise issues for domestic policy and foreign policy. With respect to domestic policy, supporters argue that acceptance of the cards is necessary in a post-September 11, 2001 America, where photo identification is required to conduct daily business. They maintain that the card is a secure and fraud-resistant document that improves security and brings people into the open financial community where transactions can be monitored more easily. Opponents argue that the cards are not secure and are needed only by aliens who are illegally present in the United States and serve to undermine U.S. immigration policy. In the area of foreign policy, supporters maintain that U.S. acceptance of the cards has improved bilateral relations with an important neighboring country. determination that the applicant is lawfully present in the United States and that specify that an official passport is the only acceptable foreign identity document.
- Information Science
- Government and Political Science
- Sociology and Law