H.R. 5759 – Legislation to Make English the National Language

English as the Official Language Act of 2008 (Introduced in House)

HR 5759 IH

110th CONGRESS
2d Session
H. R. 5759
To amend title 4, United States Code, to declare English as the national language of the Government of the United States, and for other purposes.

IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

April 10, 2008

Mr. BROUN of Georgia (for himself, Mr. BILBRAY, Mr. WESTMORELAND, Mrs. DRAKE, Mr. BARTLETT of Maryland, Mrs. BLACKBURN, Mr. AKIN, Mrs. MUSGRAVE, Mr. PITTS, Mr. GOODE, Mr. DAVID DAVIS of Tennessee, Mr. WALBERG, Mr. ADERHOLT, Mr. MARCHANT, Mr. GOHMERT, Mr. FRANKS of Arizona, Mr. PRICE of Georgia, Mr. GINGREY, Mr. DEAL of Georgia, Mr. LINDER, Mr. KINGSTON, Mr. WAMP, Mr. TANCREDO, Mr. COBLE, Ms. FOXX, Mr. POE, and Mrs. MYRICK) introduced the following bill; which was referred to the Committee on Education and Labor


A BILL
To amend title 4, United States Code, to declare English as the national language of the Government of the United States, and for other purposes.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,

SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.
    This Act may be cited as the `English as the Official Language Act of 2008′.
SEC. 2. AMENDMENT TO TITLE 4.
    Title 4, United States Code, is amended by adding at the end the following:
`CHAPTER 6–LANGUAGE OF THE GOVERNMENT
      `161. Declaration of national language.
      `162. Preserving and enhancing the role of the national language.
      `163. Use of language other than English.
`SEC. 161. DECLARATION OF NATIONAL LANGUAGE.
    `English shall be the national language of the Government of the United States.
`SEC. 162. PRESERVING AND ENHANCING THE ROLE OF THE NATIONAL LANGUAGE.
    `(a) In General- The Government of the United States shall preserve and enhance the role of English as the national language of the United States of America.
    `(b) Exception- Unless specifically provided by statute, no person has a right, entitlement, or claim to have the Government of the United States or any of its officials or representatives act, communicate, perform or provide services, or provide materials in any language other than English. If an exception is made with respect to the use of a language other than English, the exception does not create a legal entitlement to additional services in that language or any language other than English.
    `(c) Forms- If any form is issued by the Federal Government in a language other than English (or such form is completed in a language other than English), the English language version of the form is the sole authority for all legal purposes.
`SEC. 163. USE OF LANGUAGE OTHER THAN ENGLISH.
    `Nothing in this chapter shall prohibit the use of a language other than English.’.
SEC. 3. CONFORMING AMENDMENT.
    The table of chapters for title 4, United States Code, is amended by adding at the end the following new item:

161′.

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