A poll conducted by Atlanta-based Rosetta Stone Communications reveals 76.3 percent of Georgians favor a constitutional amendment making English the official language of state government, contrasted to 16.9 percent opposed and 6.8 percent having no opinion. State Sen. Josh McKoon, R-Columbus, tells InsiderAdvantage “this survey obviously indicates widespread public support for Senate Resolution 675” which he pre-filed yesterday for consideration in the 2016 Georgia General Assembly.
The poll found that S.R. 675 enjoys large majority support among Republicans and Democrats, blacks and whites and males and females. The proposed constitutional amendment for government operations would “prohibit … any language other than English be used in any documents, regulations, orders, transactions, proceedings, meetings, programs or publications” as well as “prohibit discrimination, penalties or other limits on participation against persons who speak only English.”
However, there are common-sense exceptions in S.R. 675 for the state and its political subdivisions. They include the teaching of languages other than English, the promotion of diplomacy, trade, commerce and tourism with other languages, the protection of the rights of crime victims and criminal defendants if other language usage is required and continued use of terms and phrases from other languages that are commonly used.
A constitutional amendment, if passed by the legislature, would also have to be placed on a statewide ballot for ratification by a majority of the voters.