State Supreme Court to hear appeal of candidate's proficiency

January 30, 2012

A council candidate in the border town of San Luis, Arizona is appealing a judge’s decision to remove her from a primary ballot because she is not proficient in English. Alejandrina Cabrera’s attorney filed the appeal today. KJZZ’s Al Macias reports.

 State law requires elected officials in Arizona to know English. A Yuma county superior court judge ruled last week that Alejandrina Cabrera did not meet the legal requirement.  

A soicolinguistics expert testified that based on tests he administered; Cabrera did not have the language skills needed to serve on the council.

But Cabrera's attorneys argued that the law does not define what is or isn't proficiency in the language.

Her candidacy was challenged by the San Luis mayor, Juan Carlos Escamilla.

Cabrera’s attorney said the mayor is retaliating for two failed recall efforts that Cabrera led against the mayor. He denies that claim.

Meanwhile, Cabrera says she will continue campaigning for other council candidates on the ballot.

Read the Superior Court Decision.

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