Official English Under Attack In Iowa

Official English Under Attack In Iowa

A 17-year-old law making English the official language of the state of Iowa is now under attack as legislative opponents call it “a terrible message” and “antiquated.”

According to a report in the Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier, 5 Democrats in the Iowa House of Representatives have filed a bill to repeal the 2002 Iowa English Language Reaffirmation Act, which requires official state documents to be printed in English.

The 2002 act’s opponents, however, may face an uphill battle in repealing it.

“I have no interest in repealing that,” House State Government Committee Chairman Bobby Kaufmann (R-Wilton) said of the 2002 law. “(English) is our official language.”

Rep. Kaufmann added that he has not heard from any constituents saying that they want to change the law, which does not prohibit any legislator or officer of the state from using languages than English to communicate “if that member or officer deems it necessary or desirable to do so.”

Iowa supporters of the 2002 bill said that English is a unifying factor in a state that has become increasingly diverse.

32 states across the nation have declared English as their official language.