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Author Topic: US-Canada border pass card a bad idea, U.S. Senator says  (Read 1272 times)

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[DIV class=news][DIV class=story][H1]U.S.-Canada border pass card a bad idea, U.S. Senator says[/H1][SPAN class=byline]Last Updated Thu, 02 Mar 2006 21:09:26 EST[/SPAN] [DIV class=text][A href="http://www.cbc.ca/news/credit.html"]CBC News[/A][/DIV][DIV class=text]A U.S. Senator is sounding the alarm about a plan for identity cards at the Canada-U.S. border, dubbing the idea a potential "economic and cultural train wreck." The blunt talk came from Vermont Senator Patrick Leahy who told a U.S. Senate hearing in Washington on Thursday he feels the entire plan is a "cockamamie idea."

The so-called PASS card was announced in January as an alternative to requiring Americans to use passports to re-enter their country.

The card, which will cost about $50 US, will be the size of a credit card and will include a photo and will be equipped with technology allowing radio frequency identification.

"We've got an economic and cultural train wreck on the horizon," said Leahy.

"I can just see a complete screw up on the border come Jan. 1, 2008. Our closest friend in this hemisphere is going to be, like, what happened? Are we pariahs?"

U.S. Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff defended the plan for the new cards.

"Unless we were to waive all identification requirements and just let people come and go willy-nilly, it seems we owe the American public at least a kind of identification document that is biometric and that is secure," he said.

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"We can't stop here. This is bat country."

 

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