UPDATE: The Associated Press reports that Holland submitted the bill as a tongue-in-cheek response to "anti-immigrant legislation that he finds mean-spirited and insignificant."
From the department of "Not-The-Onion" stories comes a bill out of Mississippi that would force the Gulf of Mexico to be recognized as "The Gulf Of America" for all official purposes in the state.
The legislation, authored by Mississippi Rep. Steve Holland (D), has drawn immediate pushback from a Latino GOP group, Fox News points out.
"If this bill passes the legislature and is signed into law, perhaps it is time to rename the Mississippi River," Bob Quasius, president of "Cafe Con Leche Republicans" wrote in the letter. "After all, sharing a name with a state that wants to rewrite maps out of disdain for Mexicans would be a disgrace to the rest of the nation."
"The Lincoln River would be a suitable substitute name, in honor of a great man, don't you think?" the letter continued. "We call on you to withdraw your bill and spare us all further embarrassment."
While Holland is the first legislator to put the nationalistic naming proposal into legislation, many have noted that he's not the first to float the idea.
Comedian Stephen Colbert, in a 2010 segment that aired in the wake of the BP oil spill, suggested that it should be called the "Gulf of America" in the tradition of the age-old saying "we broke it, we bought it."
The Mississippi House Marine Resources Committee is set to hold a hearing on the bill. If approved, it will be submitted to the legislature for a vote, which will decide whether to approve the change. If passed, starting July 1 Mississippi would recognize the body of water as "Gulf of America."
More:Steve Holland Steven Holland Gulf Of America Gulf Of America Bill Gulf Of America Steve Holland Gulf Of Mexico
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