Woah boy, that Marco Rubio sure is doing some interesting political gymnastics. Today, on the heels of his Senate endorsement from uber-conservative Senator Jim DeMint, Rubio affirms that he supports making English the official language of the United States.
DeMint is a strong supporter of the English only movement, supports offering Government services only in English, and voted in favor of terminating challenges to English-only job requirements.
"Congress must have the courage to declare English as our official language if we are going to be serious about assimilation. Also, Z-visa applicants should have to apply in English and show at least some level of English comprehension," wrote DeMint in an editorial in National Review
Well, along comes Marco Rubio, who hopes to appeal to Florida's Hispanic voters simply because he is Hispanic, to say that only "nuances" differ his stance on that issue and immigration from DeMint's. DeMint's stance on immigration, by the way, includes building a fence along the Mexican border, and deporting all illegal immigrants. He does not favor a guest worker program.
"We have to have a common language that unites the people. I'm not in favor of banning other languages, but my name is spelled the same way in Spanish as it is in English," said Rubio according to Naked Politics
Great Marco, just about everyone names is spelled the same in English in Spanish. Good for you. We just wish your politics were the same in both languages. Unfortunately, what you say to your English-speaking supporters isn't always what you say to your Spanish-speaking supporters.
DeMint holds radical rightist stances on these issues, and is no friend to Hispanics. Any one who hopes to capture the support of that base should have more than just nuances separating them from his stances.
One only has to remember the 1980 Anti-Bilingual Referendum in Miami-Dade to understand the racist undertones that score the English only movement. On the heels of the Mariel boatlifts, Miami-Dade's then lily white voting population passed the referendum by a 3-2 margin afraid of the incoming Cuban immigration influx. The referendum was repealed in 1993 and Miami-Dade is bilingual culture, with government services, forms, and education offered in English, Spanish, and often Creole. Services and opportunities that are often necessary to the daily lives of many citizens.