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Legislation Introduced to Make English the Official Language of Minnesota

January 13, 2011

Just days into the 2011 legislative session, a second state has introduced legislation that would make English its official language.Minnesota State Representative Steve Drazkowski introduced H.F. 64, which would declare English as the official language of the Minnesota.

In a state where 124 languages are spoken, Rep. Drazkowski’s bill aims to end the government-sponsored crutch of multilingualism by requiring that all government printed documents in Minnesota would be prepared in the English language. This measure follows the 2009 introduction of an official English bill that received no action by the end of the legislative session.

“Following the success of the ballot measure in Oklahoma, I believe many legislators will follow Rep. Drazkowski’s lead and work to make English the official language of their state,” said Mauro E. Mujica, Chairman of U.S. English. “In Oklahoma, the official English measure received the support of nearly eight-in-ten voters. Looking at these results, there can be no doubt that official English is an issue of unity in our diverse nation. I look forward to working with the people of Minnesota to such commonsense legislation come to fruition.”

A 2010 poll by Rasmussen found the strongest ever recorded support for official English legislation. The survey found that over 87 percent of Americans favor making English the official language of the United States. This included strong majorities of Democrats, Republicans and Independents and support across all socioeconomic groups.

To date, 31 states have made English the official language of the state. In the 2009-10 legislative session, bills were introduced in 15 states that would make English the official language or strengthen existing official English laws. This includes the successful passage of Oklahoma’s official English law in November 2010.

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