John McCain On Official English–He`s Against It
I would like to remind you that we made treaties with Native Americans, such as the Navajos in my state, where we respect their sovereignty and they use their native language in their deliberations. It`s not a big deal. But Native Americans are important to me in my state.
Everybody knows that English has to be learned if anyone ever wants to move up the economic ladder. That is obvious. And part of our legislation, by the way, is a requirement to learn English.
Welch goes on to say that:
Wolf Blitzer then asked “Is there anyone else who stands with Senator McCain specifically on that question?” Later, McCain pointed out that in Arizona, “Spanish was spoken before English was.”
McCain in fact has been an outspoken opponent to English-as-official-language for decades; I have in my possession letters back and forth between him and Barry Goldwater where he defends his position from the old man`s strong desire to codify federally our one national tongue….
See Se?±or McCain by Peter Brimelow, [February 15, 2000] which noted McCain using the same “Spanish was spoken in Arizona” line in 1998, and ignoring the consequences of linguistic enclaves for the rest of the country.
Peter Brimelow wrote:
In the long run, however, foreign language enclaves will impose real costs on the majority language community. For example, they will require the government increasingly to operate in the foreign language as well as English. As the history of Canada shows, this institutional bilingualism has powerful public-choice consequences. It causes a systematic redistribution of power and perquisites toward the minority language group, which as a practical matter is the only one that learns to speak both languages.