WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.) today praised the approval of his National English Amendment (S.A.1151) to the Immigration Reform Act of 2007 (S.1348) to make English the national language of the United States. Inhofe’s amendment was approved by a bi-partisan majority of the Senate (64-33).
“Last night, my amendment to make English the national language passed the Senate by a large bi-partisan majority – 64 to 33,” Inhofe said. “It was an historic vote and the Senate once again debated and affirmed that English is our national language.
“The immigration legislation being considered in the Senate includes language in Section 702 maintaining the requirement for foreign language entitlements in materials and services provided by federal agencies. My amendment recognizes English as the national language and states that federal agencies and officials are not mandated to act, communicate, perform, or provide services or materials in any language other than English, unless specifically mandated by federal statute.
“Polling of Americans throughout the country consistently demonstrates that Americans overwhelmingly believe English should be recognized as the national language of the United States. A Zogby poll conducted in May 2007 found that 83% of Americans, including 76% of Hispanics, believe that English should be the official language. Already, 30 states have adopted English as their official language.
“This debate is not just about preserving our culture and heritage, but also about bettering the odds of our nation’s newest potential citizens. It is vital to any immigration bill that we send the message to all those who have come to our country and those who will immigrate here in the future that English is the language of our land.”
Widespread U.S. polling supports making English the national language with a 2007 Zogby poll showing 83% support this initiative, including 76% of Hispanics. Currently, 30 states and 53 nations have made English their official language. Furthermore, the Office of Management and Budget estimates that it costs taxpayers between $1-2 billion to provide language assistance under President Clinton’s Executive Order 13166, which created an entitlement to services provided in languages other than English.