- The Washington Times - Monday, March 23, 2020

President Trump said Monday he’s going to delay the deadline for compliance with Real ID, a federal mandate that was set to be enforced Oct. 1, preventing anyone without a secure identification from boarding a flight.

About two-thirds of Americans currently lack compliant IDs because states have been slow to adopt them.

Officials were expecting a surge of people at state motor vehicle offices to update their identifications over the next months, but the virus has made that impossible right now, the president said. So a delay was needed.

“We will be announcing the new deadline very soon,” he said.

Real ID grew out of one of the recommendations of the 9-11 Commission that studied the way the hijackers perpetrated the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.

The commission said some of the hijackers were in the country illegally, yet were able to obtain valid driver’s licenses that they used to board the airplanes they turned into missiles.

The law containing Real ID was passed in 2005 and there was a May 11, 2011, deadline for states to comply. The Obama administration initiated several delays, finally setting the Oct. 1, 2020, deadline.

Even with the extra years, a number of states had been begging for another delay. Before coronavirus Homeland Security had been coy about whether another one would be granted.

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