Brian Zimmer is saying goodbye to Capitol Hill to join the American Association of Motor Vehicle Administrators. According to a statement, AAMVA is an association that “actively promotes traffic safety and uniformity among North American jurisdictions.” Zimmer starts today as the company’s new senior vice president of identity management.
Before making the jump, Zimmer worked for the past five years as senior policy adviser and investigator for the House Judiciary Committee. There he helped investigate and conduct the committee’s oversight on issues such as fraud prevention, border security and counterterrorism, among others.
Specifically, Brian was the Judiciary Committee’s lead staffer on the REAL ID Act, our national ID law. He is a committed and motivated proponent of that cause.
AAMVA is well recognized (by those who care to follow these issues) as a proponent of driver regulation, national IDs, and even internationally uniform ID systems. Since at least the late 1930’s AAMVA has been pushing regulatory control of drivers and driving. As I note in my book, Identity Crisis, “Before September 11, 2001, AAMVA promoted a national identification card as a solution to illegal immigration. After September 11, 2001, it promoted a national identification card as a solution to terrorism. If national identification cards are a hammer, AAMVA sees every public policy problem as a nail.”
AAMVA collects about $1 per driver per year (roughly $13 million) for its part in administering the Commercial Drivers License Information System. AAMVA would make much more as the administrator of databases required by the REAL ID Act.
Brian is a nice guy and, as I say, dedicated to his cause. His new employment provides a window into AAMVA’s role in the national ID debate.