Trump to delay Real ID deadline due to coronavirus


US President Trump on Monday said he will extend a October 1 deadline for people to apply for Real ID identification cards that enable citizens to board domestic flights in the United States.

Trump made the announcement during a news briefing on the nation’s response to the virus, as the number of confirmed cases across the U.S. now stands at more than 33,000. The resulting public health anxiety has left many Californians reluctant or unwilling to visit local branches of the Department of Motor Vehicles offices for fear of being infected.

“I’m also announcing that we’re postponing the deadline with Real ID requirements,” Trump said during the White House event. “We will be announcing the new deadline very soon.”

The president, who offered no additional details, seemed to acknowledge the challenge with asking people to visit their local DMV “at a time that we’re asking Americans to maintain social distancing.”

U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden said last Wednesday he will introduce legislation to delay federal Real ID requirements “until at least” September 2021, citing the ongoing coronavirus public health crisis.

In a statement, Oregon’s senior senator, a Democrat from Portland, said he had rallied support from Sen. Ron Johnson, R-Wisc., and Sen. Steve Daines, R-Mont., in addition to Sen. Gary Peters, D-Mich.

Oregon is expected to be the last state in the country to comply with the 2005 Real ID Act. Federal officials set a Oct. 1, 2020 for domestic air travelers to have a federally recognized form of identification to board planes. 

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