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Legislation to Reduce Government Multilingualism Continues to Gain Support

More Representatives sign on to H.R. 997, H.R. 764 and H.R. 1414

March 13, 2009

Legislation to make English the official language and reduce government multilingualism continued to pick up steam in Congress this week.

On Thursday, Rep. Lynn Jenkins and Rep. Kevin McCarthy signed on as co-sponsors of H.R. 997, the English Language Unity Act. This bill, which would make English the official language of the United States, now has 104 bi-partisan co-sponsors from 35 states. Rep. Jenkins, who is in her first term representing the Second Congressional District of Kansas, knocked off incumbent and official English opponent Nancy Boyda in last November’s election. Jenkins’ support of H.R. 997 fulfills a pledge she made last autumn to support official English legislation if elected to Congress.

Rep. McCarthy is in his second term representing the 22nd Congressional District of California. Rep. McCarthy has been a strong supporter of official English legislation since coming to Congress in 2007 and was honored last May with an A in English Award from U.S. English, Inc.

Also on Thursday, Rep. Hal Rogers became the newest co-sponsor of H.R. 764, legislation which would reduce the spread of multilingual ballots currently mandated by Congress. Introduced by Rep. Dean Heller, this measure now has 24 co-sponsors.

Rep. Rogers has been fighting to uphold the unifying bond of the English language in the United States for nearly two decades. He was first elected to Congress from the Fifth Congressional District of Kentucky in 1980 and was given an A in English Award by U.S. English for his support of official English legislation in the 110th Congress.

Earlier this week, Rep. Virginia Foxx introduced H.R. 1414, legislation that would require the government to account for spending on multilingual services, with five original co-sponsors. On Wednesday, the number of co-sponsors grew by 20 with support from Representatives across the nation, bringing the total to 25 members of Congress.

The new co-sponsors of H.R. 1414 were: Rep. Marsha Blackburn, Rep. Louie Gohmert, Rep. Jason Chaffetz, Rep. Paul Broun, Rep. Michael Conaway, Rep. Phil Gingrey, Rep. John Culberson, Rep. Donald Manzullo, Rep. Zach Wamp, Rep. Bob Latta, Rep. Mary Fallin, Rep. Patrick McHenry, Rep. Rob Bishop, Rep. Tom McClintock, Rep. Joseph Pitts, Rep. Roscoe Bartlett, Rep. John Shadegg, Rep. Trent Franks, Rep. Dan Burton and Rep. Steve King.


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