“English” Leads Gov. Bush by 60 Points in Arizona Poll

As most of you know, Gov. George W. Bush has repeatedly declared his general support for so-called “bilingual education” programs; and his strong opposition to measures such as California’s Prop. 227 or Arizona’s Prop. 203, which would replace such programs for immigrant students with intensive sheltered English immersion.

This November Arizonans will be casting their votes both on Prop. 203 and on Gov. Bush, and new statewide Arizona polls announced today might cause Bush’s Arizona supporters to regret his opposition.

One Arizona poll of registered voters conducted for television station KAET-TV shows Bush currently trailing Gore by 10 points, while a second poll of likely voters conducted by Northern Arizona University shows Bush behind by 9 points.

By contrast, the KAET-TV poll shows Prop. 203 leading by 51 points, 71% to 20%, with a margin of error of just 4.9%. Furthermore, over the last three years, three previous statewide Arizona polls commissioned by our organization have each shown that the measure was leading by about 50 points as well, among both registered and likely voters.

We very much doubt that Prop. 203 will win by anything close to such an unprecedented fifty-point margin in November. However, these polls numbers do dramatically increase the likelihood that in six weeks Arizona’s bilingual programs will be starting down the road to extinction. They must also raise fears among Bush supporters that their candidate will be purchasing a one-way ticket back to Austin around that same time.

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