Of course, the phrase “written test” is a figure of speech. Most of us think of the driving test as consisting of a pen-and-paper exam followed by a few minutes driving around with an instructor.
But when The Anniston Star looked into the matter last year, following Republican gubernatorial candidate Tim James’ TV ads about the test, the paper found out that the "written" portion is actually computerized -– and the computerized test is paid for by the federal government, and doesn’t cost the state a dime.
As the Star’s report noted, you still have to have some command of spoken English if you want to pass the driving portion of the test. Instructors in that portion of the test will give you commands and requests only in English.
Apparently the issue isn’t dead yet. Sen. Scott Beason, R-Gardendale, says he’ll considering a bill to make the whole test English-only.