Did Bernie Sanders Supporters Shout “English-Only” at Dolores Huerta?

Did Bernie Sanders Supporters Shout “English-Only” at Dolores Huerta?
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All eyes were on Nevada over the weekend, and not just because Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton won the state's caucus.

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During a Las Vegas caucus gathering in Harrah's Casino on the Las Vegas Strip on Saturday, Dolores Huerta tweeted that she wasn't allowed to provide English-to-Spanish interpretation.

America Ferrera seconded the labor and civil rights activist, adding that the decision to bar Huerta’s interpretation was praised by supporters of Democratic contender Bernie Sanders.

 

 

Both Ferrera, who recently campaigned for the former Secretary of State, and Huerta, who wrote an op-ed criticizing Sanders, are Team Hillary.

Huerta explained the event in more detail on CNN: “What happened is the person who was running the caucus said we need a translator and he said the first person that comes to the stage can be the translator, so I walked up to the front and then some of the organizers, the Bernie organizers, decided to shout ‘No, no, no ... Then a Bernie person stood up and said, I can also do translation. So then the person running the caucus said we won’t have a translator. ... Then some of the organizers were shouting ‘English only, English only.’ This is bad.”

The events were captured in a video posted by actress Susan Sarandon, a Sanders supporter. In the recording, there is a call for a Spanish translator, as some in the room did not speak English. As the Mexican-American Huerta comes to the stage to offer her help, Sanders supporters complain that "she's with Hillary." Their concern seems to be less about her Spanish and more about her bias. When the permanent chair says the would continue in English only, the crowd cheers and says "thank you." It is assumed that all those applauding were backers of Sanders.

While there’s currently no way to know if Sanders’ Las Vegas supporters were anti-Spanish translations or anti-Huerta doing the translation, or if the cheers after the English-only announcement included Clinton backers as well, there is one absolute: the Democratic National Committee effed up.

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The Voting Rights Act requires that all elections, including voting materials, must offer language assistance or interpretation services in areas where a certain concentration of voters have limited English proficiency. In Clark County, which includes Las Vegas, that means that elections should be available in English, Spanish, and Filipino/Tagalog.

These accommodations were not only ignored during planning but, when requested, they were denied.