Show Prep 072806: The Matricular Consular Eroding America's Sovereignty?
Hour One: What the hell is this thing?
In the wake of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, a migration deal with Mexico was tabled while attention turned to homeland security. So the Mexican government abruptly changed its White House strategy and substituted a grass-roots approach that would focus at the local level, seek small successes, and build momentum for congressional action. The linchpin for this new strategy was to be the “matricula consular,” an official identity card issued by the Mexican government, which it wanted to be officially recognized within the United States.Matricula not Secure
This Backgrounder is the first detailed examination of the matricula issue. Among the findings:
* The matricula consular is useful in the United States only for illegal aliens, since legal immigrants, by definition, have U.S. government-issued documents.
* The Mexican government has launched an aggressive grassroots lobbying campaign to win acceptance for its matricula card from state and local jurisdictions and from banks, especially in areas where Mexican illegal aliens are concentrated.
* The objective of this lobbying effort is to achieve quasi-legal status for Mexican illegals in the United States without waiting for action from Washington.
* The matricula itself, however, is useful to illegal aliens only insofar as U.S. institutions are willing to collaborate with Mexico’s efforts to circumvent U.S. immigration law.
* While many jurisdictions have resisted pressure from the Mexican government, others have not; the matricula is now accepted by 800 local law enforcement agencies and 74 banks, as well as by 13 states for purposes of obtaining a driver’s license.
* Not only does the matricula subvert U.S. immigration law, it is not even a secure identity document. Mexico is not authenticating the documents used to obtain the matricula against computerized data files in Mexico.
* Safeguards are not in place to prevent multiple issuance of matriculas to the same individual; in fact, the INS has already reported finding multiple cards in different names issued to the same person.
* The matricula is becoming a shield that hides criminal activity for two reasons: first, the holder’s identity was not verified when the card was issued, and second, police in jurisdictions that accept the matricula are less likely to run background checks on card holders picked up for minor infractions.
* The U.S. Treasury Department has given its approval to banks to accept the matricula for opening bank accounts.
* The acceptance of Mexico’s matricula consular sets a precedent, making it almost impossible to reject similar cards presented by illegal aliens from other countries, including those which have sent terrorists to the United States in the past.
Early in September 2001, the Mexican government had every expectation that it would soon achieve its principal foreign policy goal — a comprehensive migration agreement with the United States that would create new guest worker programs, exempt Mexico from visa limits, and “regularize” the immigration status of the estimated three to five million Mexicans already living in the United States illegally.
After 9/11, public and congressional opposition in the United States to an illegal-alien amnesty hardened and made such a deal impossible. In its place, Mexico sought piecemeal changes, centered on gaining acceptance in the United States for the “matricula consular.” But Mexico’s new approach has become a direct challenge to U.S. sovereignty — by aggressively lobbying state and local governments, Mexico is changing America’s de facto immigration policy in lieu of congressional action. And it has been doing so while the U.S. government watched — or even gave its tacit consent.
Mexico is not authenticating breeder documents. For an identity card to be secure, the “breeder” documents provided must be authenticated to guard against identity fraud. Safeguards must also be in place to ensure that the goal of one person, one identity, one card is met.FBI Official Says Matricula Consular Card Is Security Threat
This issue is particularly complicated for the Mexican government, which is fully aware that its nationals commit document and identity fraud to remain in the United States. Previously, this issue was not of concern to them; but now, the Mexican government is warning its citizens against this practice.
"Clearly, this is a threat to vulnerability," Steven McCraw, the assistant director of the FBI's Office of Intelligence, told a House immigration panel yesterday.Homeland security has also expressed concerns (Skeletor must have taken a sick day)
“The FBI is particularly concerned about fraudulent financial transactions in the post 9/11 environment, given the fact that foreign terrorists often rely on money transferred from within the United States.”—McCraw, FBI “Federal officials have discovered individuals from many different countries in possession of the matricula consular card. … At least one individual of Middle Eastern descent has also been arrested in possession of the matricula consular card. The ability of foreign nationals to use the matricula consular to create a well-documented, but fictitious, identity in the United States provides an opportunity for terrorists to move freely within the United States without triggering name-based watch lists that are disseminated to local police officers. It allows them to board planes without revealing their true identity.”—McCraw, FBI
"We're very concerned about these cards,' said Homeland Security Department Assistant Secretary C. Stewart Verdery.Yet our government pushes banks and businesses to accept them...
Verdery voiced concern about misuse of the cards as "breeder documents' to more easily gain access to other documents, such as driver's licenses, and create false identities
We believe that individuals have been able to obtain multiple cards under multiple names, an occurrence which poses a significant security issue and impacts their reliability as valid forms of identification.
Another concern is the extent to which consular identification cards are used as “breeder documents,” that is, to more easily gain access to other documentation, such as drivers’ licenses. We are concerned that foreign consular identification cards fraudulently obtained could aid criminal activity - such as money laundering - by facilitating the creation of false identities. We need to examine not only the security features of these cards but also the security of the issuance process and the documentary requirements for obtaining them.
U.S. Treasury gives banks comfort to accept the matricula. A key factor influencing the banking community to accept the matricula is its belief that the U.S. Treasury Department has given its approval.19 “Under section 326(b) of the USA Patriot Act, Congress directed that Treasury, in consultation with the federal functional regulators and other relevant agencies, study and provide recommendations for enhancing the ability of domestic financial institutions to verify the identity of foreign nationals.”20Or the Mexican consulate scares local politicians into accepting them...
In its report to Congress, Treasury spelled out what type of information a financial institution may require from a non-U.S. person seeking to open an account: “The regulations state that financial institutions may accept one or more of the following: a U.S. taxpayer identification number; a passport number and country of issuance; an alien identification card number, or the number and country of issuance of any other government-issued document evidencing nationality or residence and bearing a photograph or similar safeguard.” (Italics added.)21
That sentence was followed by footnote 17. It was a shocker. “Thus, the proposed regulations do not discourage bank acceptance of the ‘matricula consular’ identity card that is being issued by the Mexican government to immigrants.”
Consider, for example, how the cards’ promotion has affected the rule of law in the city of Waukegan, Illinois. (Chicago Tribune, Sept. 15th, 2002, “Hispanics are flexing their political muscle” Pay archive). There, several aldermen opposed the acceptance of the matricula consular. How did the pro-matricular forces (which included a Mexican consul) deal with it?And of course the media, never misses a chance to support illegals...
“The Hispanic community rallied 1,000-strong outside City Hall, chanting and waving signs that read, ‘Stop the Racism’....that Aug. 19th protest ....ended with the mayor ordering police to accept the cards as valid identification.... ”
(The aldermen didn’t even get to vote on the question, by the way).
It’s been called a matter of public safety. It’s been said that the cards give “dignity” to illegal aliens. An editorial in the Indianapolis Star (Feb. 10th, 2003) reassured us that “The Mexican ID card is not a threat to national security, but a tool for facilitating communication.” It went on to attack those who question the matricula: “Concern that Mexican ID cards issued by the Indianapolis consulate pose a threat to national security should be dismissed for what it is: prejudice against Mexican immigrants.”Of course Mexican officials and some media deny the card has anything to do with immigration...
Fall into line, in other words, or be branded a racist.
How many times have we heard this tired excuse for an argument?
According to Maria Elena Salinas, Jorge Ramos’ co-anchor on the Spanish-language TV network Univision: “...it is not an illegal-alien ID card...”Mexican consuls regularly meddle in our internal politics, this will be the subject of a future show, today just let me say I do not understand why our weak-willed government plays patty cake with a country that we are currently at war with.
Roberto Rodriguez, director general of the Bureau for Protection and Consular Services “The consular ID’s purpose is to provide identification for nationals. It has nothing to do with immigration.”
Mexico’s Deputy Consul for North and South Carolina: “This is not about immigration...This is about the safety of our citizens.”
And here's the ultimate problem, when the very idea of citizenship is subverted you get statements like this one...
The INS spokesman for the LA district said that "Our priorities are to go after illegal immigrants committing crime. If they are law-abiding citizens, we don't have the resources to go looking for them."Just so's it's clear, your government is now calling illegal aliens "citizens." (and you know in your heart that president Bush has to bite his tongue to keep from making the same slip)
Your moment of Atzlan
Illegal Immigration News
Some follow up from yesterday's show....
We had the lovely Bryanna Bevens on yesterday until we were so rudely cut off.
Her new article is here.
Vdare's fundraising drive is here.
Roy Warden needs some help!
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