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Escape From New Mexico Costs $100 Extra

One of the things I’ve always liked about living in New Mexico is how convenient it is for business travel. I can hop on a plane and get to many of our nation’s largest metros within three hours. Well, shortly after the New Year, it looks like it is going to cost me an extra $100 if I want to avoid being quarantined to New Mexico:

“The way it is right now, come Jan. 1st, residents of New Mexico and residents of about 25 other states wouldn’t be allowed to board airplanes unless they had a valid passport.”

And, why is this?

The biggest issue is that New Mexico gives driver’s licenses to foreign nationals and illegal immigrants, which under the new law, would be illegal.

So, because our state government thinks it is important to make New Mexico a sanctuary state for illegal immigrants, I have to pay $100 extra if I want to travel freely in my own country. Yeah, that makes sense. Oh, I know some of you want to blame it on the Bush Administration for pushing the Real ID Law. For the record, I was not a fan of the expansion of a police state then any more than I am now. But, they’ve been gone for almost a year, so the new administration is just as much to blame for pushing this expansion of government and the resulting new tax on citizens.

And, that is exactly what it is – a new tax. Any time a government decision requires you to fork over more money to comply, it is a new tax. What really irks me is that no one at the state or federal level seems to care that this is going to cost me both a significant amount of time and money:

“Right now it’s a game of chicken, between the federal government and the state governments,” [New Mexico Taxation and Revenue Secretary Rick] Homans said.

A game of chicken? That’s the game where two people in moving vehicles come right at one another and see which one swerves out of the way first, right? Well, it’s really easy for state and federal government to play chicken with one another when the taxpayer/traveler is the one driving both cars. Nothing like taxpayer pain for bureaucratic amusement.

So, the states and the feds can’t get on the same page to allow law-abiding citizens to travel freely within our national borders. Now, what do you think is going to happen when we have nationalized healthcare?