Category: Official English
- During a 2007 GOP Primary Debate hosted by CNN in New Hampshire, moderator Wolf Blitzer asked the candidates:
“But the question was, I'd only like those to speak up who believe that English should not necessarily be the official language of the United States. Is there anyone else who stands with Senator McCain specifically on that question?”
Romney did not raise his hand during that debate to oppose official English, but he did conduct a Spanish-language campaign that cycle (in 2007-08) and again, currently, in 2011.
"I think Speaker Gingrich is right with regards to what he's described. Look, English is the language of this nation. People need to learn English to be able to be successful, to get great jobs. We don't want to have people limited in their capacity to achieve the American dream because they don't speak English. And so encouraging people through every means possible to learn the language of America is a good idea.
Source: NBC GOP primary debate in Florida, January 23, 2012.
"I think our position on English in our schools and in our nation is the same, which I believe English should be the official language of the United States. I also believe that in our schools, we should teach kids in English. I fought for a program to have English immersion in our schools so our kids could learn in English. I think we agree on this: Kids in this country should learn English so they can have all the jobs and all the opportunity of people who are here.
Source: CNN 2012 GOP primary debate on the eve of Florida primary , Jan 26, 2012.
2. Multilingual Ballots:
3. DREAM Act / Amnesty: (Development, Relief, and Education of Alien Minors*)
*ProEnglish assesses the candidates’ positions on the federally introduced DREAM Act because the legislation would grant legal status to millions of non-English-speaking persons without requiring English proficiency first. ProEnglish also opposes the DREAM Act because it would increase the demand for taxpayer-funded multilingual government services.
“I've got be honest with you, I don't see how it is that a state like Texas -- to go to the University of Texas, if you're an illegal alien, you get an in-state tuition discount. You know how much that is? That's $22,000 a year. Four years of college, almost $100,000 discount if you are an illegal alien go to the University of Texas. If you are a United States citizen from any one of the other 49 states, you have to pay $100,000 more. That doesn't make sense to me. And that kind of magnet draws people into this country to get that education, to get the $100,000 break. It makes no sense.
- As Governor of Massachusetts, Romney vetoed legislation that would have granted in-state tuition benefits to illegal aliens. The veto was upheld by the legislature.
Source: “Tuition bill veto may face override challenge.” The Boston Globe. July 11, 2004.
4. Puerto Rican Statehood: (Requiring Puerto Rico to make English its only official language before being admitted as the 51st state and opposing Congress passing legislation that rigs the self-determination process in Puerto Rico).
"Governor Romney believes that English is the language of opportunity and supports efforts to expand English proficiency in Puerto Rico and across America," Saul said in a statement. "However, he would not, as a prerequisite for statehood, require that the people of Puerto Rico cease using Spanish.
Source: CNN blog, Romney stakes opposition to Santorum over language, March 15, 2012
- While visiting Puerto Rico ahead of the GOP primary there in march 2012, Mitt Romney told a San Juan radio station that he opposes requiring a language policy change for Puerto Rico if they petition to become a state. He said he opposed it for the state government, schools and judiciary. This statement contradicts Romney's previous declaration that he supports making English the official language of the U.S. federal government. It is not enough that Puerto Rico has English as an honorary "official" language. All government business and schools are conducted in Spanish, and the schools have no language immersion programs for non-Spanish speakers. A Spanish-speaking Puerto Rican State is incompatible with an official English federal government, and Governor Romney should address this policy inconsisentency.
“The voters have spoken loud and clear on the issue of bilingual education. We need to respect the wishes of the people of Massachusetts and recognize that immersion creates a level playing field in our classrooms that allows non-English speakers to succeed.
Source: “Press Release: ROMNEY VOWS TO PROTECT ENGLISH IMMERSION LAW,” May 1, 2003.
- "He instituted English immersion in the public schools and abolished the old bilingual education system."
Source: “Romney is the kind of leader we need.” The Boston Globe, by William Weld. Dec. 14, 2007.
“Individuals in the legislature or elsewhere who believe they are smarter than the voters, I'm going to campaign to find people to take their place.”
Souce: “Watered Down English Immersion Law Incurs Governor's Wrath,” Eagle Forum’s Education Reporter, November 2003. An overwhelming 68% percent of Massachusetts voters approved a ballot initiative last year requiring that immigrant students be placed in all-English classes instead of bilingual classes. But on July 14 the lawmakers voted to override the governor's veto of several newly created exemptions, including one for "two-way" programs, a form of bilingual education in which students of different cultures learn each other's languages simultaneously.