August 19, 2010
Phil Kent, (404) 226-3549
(Arlington, VA)—ProEnglish, the nation’s leading advocate for English as the official language of government, urged the Obama Administration today to reject the recommendations outlined in a recent internal U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) memo to bypass the legislative process and grant amnesty to millions of illegal aliens under the premise of executive authority. ProEnglish Executive Director Jayne Cannava made the following comments today alongside fellow opponents of administration amnesty during a joint press conference at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C.:
“ProEnglish strongly opposes blanket amnesty because it would give legal status to millions of illegal aliens without requiring them to learn English. Giving legal status to millions of non-English speaking illegal aliens would dramatically expand demands for government services in foreign languages and further erode English’s critical role as our unifying national language.”
“USCIS should not be in the business of recommending ways in which the executive branch can abuse its very limited constitutional powers to force blanket amnesty with no prerequisites for legalization on the American people without the consent of Congress. Rather, USCIS and the Obama Administration should advocating legislation in Congress, such as H.R. 997, the English Language Unity Act, that has overwhelming popular support and fosters the assimilation process. H.R 997 would establish English as the official language of the United States, require all naturalization ceremonies to be held in English, and require a uniform rule for testing English proficiency within the naturalization process.”
“At a time with soaring national deficits and rising unemployment, the White House should not be seeking to increase the financial burdens on American citizens by forcing them to subsidize costly government-mandated multilingual services to accommodate what would be the newly-legalized non-English speaking population. ProEnglish strongly urges President Obama to openly reject any plans to achieve amnesty without a vote in Congress.”
Cannava cited recent polling, released by Rasmussen Reports last week, which found that 83% of likely voters think that a higher priority should be placed on encouraging immigrants to speak English as their primary language. The same poll also found that the vast majority of likely-voters, 84%, think that English should be made the nation’s official language.