- Associated Press - Wednesday, February 26, 2014

ATLANTA (AP) - Republican gubernatorial candidate John Barge says Georgia should consider the possibility of providing driver’s licenses to those living in the country without legal permission, citing road safety concerns.

Barge, the state schools superintendent, said Wednesday on his campaign website that such a step wouldn’t permit someone to enter a federal building or clear airport security, but would allow them to drive legally and obtain insurance. He also issued a broader call for tighter border security.

Barge says the driver’s licenses would “improve safety on our roads without simultaneously creating a pathway to legal residency.” The position will likely be unpopular among conservative Republican primary voters.

Barge is waging an uphill campaign against Gov. Nathan Deal, who’s seeking re-election. Also running in the GOP primary is Dalton Mayor David Pennington.