ILLEGALS RALLY Gov. Lincoln Chafee meets in the State House rotunda Monday with protestors demanding Rhode Island issue driver's licenses to illegal immigrants. Photo by Steve Klamkin WPRO News
More than 50 protestors marched to the State House in Providence late Monday afternoon, calling for the state to issue driver's licenses to illegal immigrants.
The group said they want to hold Governor Lincoln Chafee to what they said was a promise he made during his 2010 campaign, to take up issues important to immigrants, including that of driver's licenses.
Posted: 11/19/2012 6:08:56 PM
Updated: 11/19/2012 6:10:00 PM
"Our families are dying of hunger because we cannot bring home food because we don't have licenses," said one protestor in Spanish through a translator, just before Chafee walked down the marble steps of the State House rotunda to meet with the group.
"All I can say, we'll continue to look at it, I know there's some impatience here," said Chafee to the group. "But, I will continue to listen to what you have to say on this issue."
"I want to do my homework, that's what I've always said," Chafee told a reporter. Asked by a protestor if he would meet with the group, Chafee said, "let's do it quickly."
"Two weeks?" The woman asked.
"Yes, yes, well yeah, as fast as we can, we've got holidays, I'll do my best, I always have, yes, I'll do my best."
With that, the crowd turned and streamed out of the rotunda, chanting, "We'll be back, we'll be back."
Outside the State House, Terry Gorman, President of the group, Rhode Islanders for Immigration Law Enforcement expressed incredulity that illegal immigrants were pressing for licenses.
"They're illegal, so that's against the law. They want driver's licenses, so they can drive to work, which is also against the law. What are we doing to ourselves," asked Gorman.