Today's Edition Local News Missouri News National News World Opinion Obits Sports GoMidMo Events Classifieds Jobs Newsletters Contests Search
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT
story.lead_photo.caption Missouri's Capitol in Jefferson City is shown during the early morning hours. Photo by News Tribune / News Tribune.

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) -- Missouri senators on Wednesday voted to give residents the option to get a driver's license that complies with a federal identification requirement, which would allow people to board airplanes and enter military bases.

The measure passed the Senate 28-5 in the early morning after hours of debate. It would give Missouri residents the option to get compliant or noncompliant state driver's licenses and identification cards.

"I understand it's not what everybody wants," Kansas City Republican Sen. Ryan Silvey said. "But it does provide our citizens with a choice."

Missouri is one of only five states that doesn't comply or have an extension to comply with the federal law establishing tougher licensing requirements in the wake of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.

The law, passed in 2005 under former President George W. Bush, mandates more stringent proof-of-identity requirements in response to the terrorist attacks. The Sept. 11 hijackers obtained valid identification cards from various states, according to the FBI, and a commission that reported on the attacks recommended the federal government develop standards for issuing identification cards as a way to help prevent terrorism and fraud.

Current state law doesn't allow the state to issue Real IDs, and lawmakers have resisted changing that policy because the act requires the state to create a database with copies of documents such as birth certificates.

If no action is taken, residents won't be able to use Missouri identification to board planes and enter some federal facilities, such as military bases, without extra documentation or a passport starting in 2018.

That hasn't swayed some skeptics.

"This bill is bigger government, and it is intruding into the lives of our citizens," said Sen. Will Kraus, a Lee's Summit Republican and one of the staunchest critics of the Real ID Act. "It is taking their private information and putting it in a national database."

Senators after private negotiations added changes to the legislation aimed at protecting people's information and soothing critics. Those tweaks include banning copies of documents from being kept online.

Changes mean the legislation heads back to the House.

Lawmakers have until Friday to send bills to Republican Gov. Eric Greitens, who has said he supports giving Missourians options that will allow them to access to air travel and military bases.

Related audio/video:

Missouri House live video

Missouri Senate live audio

Alternate House/Senate live audio (via Missouri Digital News)

Related Twitter feeds:

Missouri Senate

Missouri House 

COMMENTS - It looks like you're using Internet Explorer, which isn't compatible with our commenting system. You can join the discussion by using another browser, like Firefox or Google Chrome.
It looks like you're using Microsoft Edge. Our commenting system is more compatible with Firefox and Google Chrome.
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT