Minnesota’s Democratic-Farmer-Labor Party is reaching out to Somalis and all non-English speaking residents to teach them what to do in the state’s upcoming caucus on February 7. The volunteers for the DFL Party shot videos, spoken in Somali and Spanish, to explain the caucus process.
Are Republicans actually participating in this outreach? An article on Minnesota Public Radio states: “Both the state DFL and, to a lesser extent, the Minnesota Republican Party, are pushing the state’s immigrant communities to get involved.” Minnesota Republican Party Communications Director, Heather Dodgers-Rubash, also states that local Republican groups are “organizing on the ground.” Really? Isn’t this against the GOP principle that English should be the official language of government?
It is understood that all American citizens should be able to actively participate in the political process and making their voice heard. However, are Somalis and other non-English speaking people able to make an informed vote? The caucus process is explained in their native language(s) but is someone translating all the GOP debates, the President’s State of the Union, and the political ads run on TV? Are there websites in their native language(s) that are reporting on these events? If not, are these informed voters?
“…whenever the people are well-informed, they can be trusted with their own government; that, whenever things get so far wrong as to attract their notice, they may be relied on to set them right.” – Thomas Jefferson