A controversial photo card issued by the Mexican government will be recognized as legal identification in Indianapolis, a move that could help Mexican immigrants obtain driver’s licenses and insurance, open bank accounts and get health care, the Indianapolis Star says.
Indianapolis Mayor Bart Peterson said the decision to accept the “matricula consular” — also known as the Consular ID — is a key step in efforts to reach out to a rapidly growing population. Its main impact on local government, he said, will be to help law enforcement. “The more (cards) that are issued,” he said, “the better it will be for purposes of helping law enforcement identify the people they are interacting with.”
Critics say the move amounts to an endorsement of illegal immigration. “It sounds as if they are aiding and abetting illegal aliens and encouraging others to break federal laws,” said Susan Tully of Federation for American Immigration Reform. “This is a ploy by the Mexican government to circumvent immigration policy and process and the legal way the United States processes immigrants.”
The photo IDs are recognized by more than 400 cities and 900 law enforcement agencies across the country.