Posted on January 25, 2005

Actors, Writers And Musicians Push for Immigrant Drivers Licenses

Laura Wides, AP, Jan. 24

LOS ANGELES — On the eve of this year’s Oscar nominations, one group of celebrities has come up with a new category — “Best Nanny in a Supporting Role.”

The mock award was featured Monday in an ad signed by more than 30 actors, writers and musicians in a Hollywood trade paper, urging Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger to approve a bill that would allow illegal immigrants to obtain drivers licenses.

Celebrities such as Diane Keaton, Carlos Santana and “Million Dollar Baby” writer Paul Haggis took out the ad in Variety. They argue it will make roads safer and that the ability to drive is a civil right.

The ad features a picture of a Hispanic woman and two young children with the caption, “Nominated: Best Nanny in a Supporting Role.”


Among the ad’s other signatories are Martin Sheen and his son Emilio Estevez, Alfre Woodward, Danny Glover and musician Jackson Browne.


Mike Spence, who is leading a campaign to permanently prohibit undocumented immigrants in California from obtaining drivers licenses and other social services, disagreed.

“I think it’s another example of how rich Hollywood elites are out of touch with what’s going on in California,” Spence said. “They don’t see the impact of immigration unless it’s hiring someone to help out with chores around their mansions . . . and they’re not in competition with illegal immigrants for jobs.”