Arizona candidate with ‘survival English’ fights to get on ballot

by
January 29, 2012

By Ricardo Lopez, Los Angeles Times

Alejandrina Cabrera, a city council candidate in Arizona, is appealing a lower-court decision that barred her from seeking office because a judge determined that her English was too poor, one of her lawyers said Saturday.

Cabrera’s lawyers filed a notice to appeal late Friday, and will likely file an appellate brief Monday, Ryan Hengl, one of her attorneys, told The Times.

Cabrera hopes to run for City Council in San Luis, a small town of about 25,000 residents about 20 miles southwest of Yuma.

Her case, believed to be the first of its kind in Arizona, has sparked much debate over how English-proficient a candidate for public office must be, particularly in border towns where much of the population primarily speaks Spanish.

In San Luis, the population is almost 99% Latino and is predominantly of Mexican heritage, according to U.S. Census data.

“Alejandrina definitely reflects the town,” Hengl said.

To read more, visit:  http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/nationnow/2012/01/arizona-candidate-with-survival-english-appeals-court-decision.html

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