@NCCapitol

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GOP freshman seeks to make English NC's 'official language'

Posted March 28, 2011 9:57 p.m. EDT
Updated March 28, 2011 10:02 p.m. EDT

Freshmen House lawmaker Kelly Hastings (R-Gaston) has filed a proposal for a constitutional amendment to make English the official language of North Carolina. 

It's not clear what House Bill 475 would do, aside from drawing the Republican base to the polls, since it specifically says it would not supersede anyone's rights under the U.S. or NC Constitution. 

Hastings said he was inspired to put forth the amendment when he was “reading it [the U.S. Constitution] again this weekend.”

“English is the language of business across the world,” he noted. “And so I just thought it should be enshrined in the Constitution with an amendment.”

I asked whether he felt the English language was under threat in North Carolina. “I don’t get the sense that it’s really under threat,” Hastings said.

But, he added, "We need to respect the fact that English has been very important to the history of North Carolina.” 

Watch the video clip for more.