Nashville Rejects English-Only Law
English-only proposal defeated
By Peter Fearon,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 23, 2009 7:30 AM CST
A yard sign in Nashville encouraging people to vote against an amendment that would require all city work to be done in English.   (AP Photo/Juanita Cousins)
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(Newser) – Nashville voters last night defeated an attempt to make English the city's official language, the Tennessean reports. The measure, which would have forced the city council to conduct public business only in English, would have made Nashville the nation's largest city to do so. The referendum failed by a vote of 41,752 to 32,144.

"Voters win because we gave them the option to vote on this issue," said Metro councilman Eric Crafton, who spearheaded the measure. "I'm just glad we're able to vote on this." Opponents said the proposal was divisive and would send the wrong message about the city. Roughly 10% of Nashville's 600,000 residents speak a language other than English at home, census data says.