Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Senate Passes Measure to make English the National Language

On May 18th, 2006, the U.S. Senate approved an amendment offered by Sen. James Inhofe that would make English the national language of the United States. The amendment, offered as part of comprehensive immigration reform legislation, passed by a margin of 63-34. The measure declares that there is no affirmative right to receive services in languages other than English, except where required by federal law. In addition, the measure upholds English as part of U.S. naturalization requirements.

"This is a historic vote in support of the language that has united Americans for more than two centuries," said Mauro E. Mujica, Chairman of the Board of U.S. English, Inc. "Making English the national language is a longstanding oversight that today's Senate vote corrected. Today's vote heeded the voices of the vast majority of Americans who believe that English is a crucial part of being an American."

According to a 2005 poll by Zogby International, 79 percent of Americans support making English the official language of the United States, including more than two-thirds of Democrats and four-fifths of first- and second-generation Americans. H.R. 997, legislation pending in the U.S. House of Representatives that would make English the official language recently collected its 150th co-sponsor and is one of the most widely supported bills in the 109th Congress.

NAYs - 34
Akaka (D-HI)
Bayh (D-IN)
Biden (D-DE)
Bingaman (D-NM)
Boxer (D-CA)
Cantwell (D-WA)
Clinton (D-NY)
Dayton (D-MN)
Dodd (D-CT)
Domenici (R-NM)
Durbin (D-IL)
Feingold (D-WI) Feinstein (D-CA)
Harkin (D-IA)
Inouye (D-HI)
Jeffords (I-VT)
Kennedy (D-MA)
Kerry (D-MA)
Kohl (D-WI)
Lautenberg (D-NJ)
Leahy (D-VT)
Levin (D-MI)
Lieberman (D-CT)
Menendez (D-NJ) Mikulski (D-MD)
Murray (D-WA)
Obama (D-IL)
Reed (D-RI)
Reid (D-NV)
Salazar (D-CO)
Sarbanes (D-MD)
Schumer (D-NY)
Stabenow (D-MI)
Wyden (D-OR)

Why did so many prominent Democrats vote against it and how come all of them that voted against it were Democrats.

What do you think?