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December 10, 2009

REAL ID: Will you get caught by the deadline?

REAL ID is scheduled to go into effect on January 1. The good news is that it may be repealed by then. The bad news is that it may be replaced by something worse, the PASS ID.

Please tell Congress to repeal REAL ID and reject the PASS ID.

This is what I wrote in my letter . . .

REAL ID has proved to be unworkable and unwanted.

  • 36 states will not be in compliance with REAL ID by the January 1 deadline
  • Fifteen states have passed statutes prohibiting it, and another ten have passed resolutions denouncing it.

If REAL ID is not repealed,

I insist that you take immediate steps to repeal the REAL ID Act.

  • Don’t rely on the Homeland Security Secretary to issue extensions or waivers for the states
  • Don’t replace REAL ID with the PASS ID.

The proposed PASS ID relieves states of some costs and burdens, but in some ways it’s even worse than REAL ID. As the Electronic Privacy Information Center notes . . .

  • The data collection requirements of PASS ID are virtually identical to those of REAL ID.
  • PASS ID requires a digital facial image, which can then be used to scan individuals through close-circuit television systems to “pick a face out of a crowd.”
  • PASS ID requires the retention of digital copies of personal records for indefinite periods of time – this invades the privacy of innocent Americans and increases the risk of identity theft
  • PASS ID would allow the use of RFID technology in identification documents. This is even worse than REAL ID, and could lead to government tracking of our movements, bringing the supposed “land of the free and home of the brave” one step closer to a police state.

The American people do not want to be monitored and tracked by the government. We do not want a national ID card, whether it’s called REAL ID or PASS ID. A national ID card will only make us more vulnerable to terrorists and other criminals who can hack into government databases. Moreover, increased government monitoring and data-collecting will invite more errors and more abuse.


I therefore insist that you completely repeal REAL ID immediately and reject the PASS ID Act too.


You can send your message through’s Educate the Powerful System.

And share this message with your friends.

Jim Babka
President, Inc.

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