The Washington Times - November 1, 2007, 07:18PM

\ “In discussions I participated in with the Department of Homeland Security, they were asked point blank, ‘What will happen to states that don’t participate?’” said Maine Secretary of State Matthew Dunlap. “The response was, ‘Nothing will happen. There will be no penalty. You can still get on a plane.’”\

\ If true, that would eliminate the major stick congressional lawmakers put into the 2005 act — the threat that licenses from states that didn’t comply would be worthless for many important activities, such as entering a federal building or boarding an airplane.\

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\ Real ID sets national standards that are supposed to prevent illegal aliens from getting licenses, but state officials say those standards are too burdensome on legal residents and could cost billions of dollars to implement fully.\

\ But some states are embracing Real ID, including New York Gov. Eliot Spitzer, who this weekend decided his state will issue three classes of license, including two that comply with the act and a third, available to illegal aliens, that would allow them to drive but would not be accepted for federal purposes.\

\ — Stephen Dinan, national political reporter, The Washington Times