The ever-provocative Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump recently said in an interview with Brietbart News that while he likes Jeb Bush, his rival “should really set the example by speaking English while in the United States.”
Presidential candidate Carly Fiorina weighed in on the comment in an interview in CNN that she admires Bush’s ability to speak both English and Spanish, however “English is the official language of the United States.”
Fiorina, who also addressed the issue of border control and the legal immigration system, is factually wrong. Unlike many other countries, the United States does not have an official language. However, most states do, The Huffington Post reported.
Fiorina currently lives in Virginia, where English has been the state language since 1996. Overall, 68 percent of Americans over the age of 5 speak English proficiently.
Despite the English language majority, Trump’s remarks could be passed off as alienating for the 53 million Latinos who vote, although that number is expected to grow, NPR reported. Republicans might need to court the Latino vote to win the White House in 2016, given that the Hispanic population grew by nearly 49 percent between 2000 and 2012 - the rest of the population has grown at 5.8 percent.