Monday, February 6, 2012

Ruling Expected This Week On Law Requiring English-Speaking Candidates

Posted By on Mon, Feb 6, 2012 at 9:25 AM

An Arizona judge's ruling that an American citizen cannot run for city council because she doesn't have "adequate" English-speaking skills is expected to have wide-reaching implications far from the dusty border town of San Luis, Ariz.

Yuma County Superior Court Judge John Nelson ruled that potentital city council candidate Alejandrina Cabrera's command of English was insufficient for her to hold public office. She appealed to the Arizon Supreme Court, which is expected to rule on her case early this week.

Cabrera was born in Yuma, Ariz., but raised in Mexico, and like most of her neighbors, she conducts her life in Spanish. According to the U.S. Census bureau, San Luis is 98.7 percent Latino. However, Arizona state law stipulates that all office seekers for state or local elections be able to speak , read and write English without the aid of an interpreter or translator. Cabrera argues that the law does not set a level of proficiency.

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