Fact-checking Rick Scott's claim about driver's licenses for Dreamers and whether the bill he vetoed would have changed "nothing"
Gov. Rick Scott and Charlie Crist are competing for the Hispanic vote, leading the candidates to argue about their stances on everything from the Cuba embargo to rights for illegal immigrants.
During the Telemundo debate Oct. 10, the debate moderator asked the candidates to explain their conflicting views on driver’s licenses for illegal immigrants brought to the United States as children.
In 2013, the Legislature passed a bill to give driver licenses to those with Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, sometimes called "Dreamers." Scott vetoed it.
Crist, a Democrat, said during the debate: "I’m in favor of a driver’s license for Dreamers. The governor recently signed a bill where they can have in-state tuition. And that was a good thing to do. But if you can’t drive to school, or you can’t drive to your job, good luck getting to work."
Scott, a Republican, responded: "The driver’s license bill that was passed, nothing changed. Those same individuals have the right to get a Florida driver’s license today."
Scott was partially correct and partially misleading. Floridians who get Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, called DACA, generally get work permits, which they can use to get driver’s licenses.
But he is overstating the situation when he says "nothing changed," because that bill would have affirmatively given those immigrants the right to use their DACA forms to get a driver’s license, even if their work permit didn’t arrive simultaneously. Turn to PolitiFact Florida to read more.