We couldn't agree more with Adam Smith's assessment of Jeb Bush's political fortunes in the Tampa Bay Times' column The Buzz: Loser of the weekJeb Bush. The Lee County School Board voted to opt out of Common Core. Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal, a presidential contender, sued the federal government over Common Core, while Rick Scott is scrambling to distance himself from Common Core and standardized testing. Bush's strength as a presidential candidate looks much more dubious today than a few months ago, amid widespread backlash against education accountability policies closely associated with him.
In addition, even though, despite the opponents running valiant, but underfunded campaigns (Thanks to Jorge Bonilla, Michael Dreikorn, and those that ran an anti-Common Core platform in CD 26); some of Mr. Bush's preferred candidates did win, there are at least two legislative candidates and a veritable army of school board candidates who won or advanced to the general election on an anti-Common Core or anti-high stakes testing platform. They are ready to do what Lee County did, even though bullying tactics from Tallahassee may reverse that on Tuesday. Here is just a partial list (please let us know who we are missing) with more to come:
Florida House of Representatives:
District 74 - Julio GonzalezDistrict 31- Jennifer Sullivan
District 3 - Gunner Paulson (won & opposes high stakes testing)District 5 - Rob Hyatt (won & opposes Common Core completely)
District 1 - Kelly Lichter (won & opposes Common Core completely)District 3 - Erika Donalds (advanced & opposes Common Core completely)
District 2 - Janet McDonald (advanced and opposes Common Core completely)
District 4 - Terry Kemple (advanced & opposes Common Core completely)District 6 - Dipah Shah (advanced & opposes Common Core completely)< Read more
Of the five candidates that are running in the August 26th primary to take on Democrat Congressman Joe Garcia in Congressional District 26 that runs from Miami to Key West, only Miami-Dade School Board member Carlos Curbelo supports Common Core. And according to his op-ed in the Miami Herald, he supports it in a big way.In that piece, he used all of the typical pro-Common Core talking points while demonizing the experts and parents that have brought up many legitimate concerns. Here are a couple of the more egregious points: "However, in order to win debates, and more important, elections, conservatives must brandish facts while ignoring scare tactics that yield irrational paranoia. Skepticism should not devolve into callousness, stubbornness, and the rejection of government in all its manifestations. Ours should be the belief that a limited and responsible government can contribute to the advancement of our nation and its people, and nowhere is that fact more evident or more critical than in the area of education. That is why we should support the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) for K-12 education."
Translation Government overreach is bad, just not in education. Curbelo is apparently unaware that the RNC; the National Federation of Republican Women; multiple committees within the Republican Party of Florida (RPOF); nearly 30 Republican Executive Committees (RECs) in Florida; and almost all of the potential Republican presidential candidates except for Jeb Bush, Chris Christie, and Mike Huckabee; have all rejected Common Core. Would he say that any of these people are irrationally paranoid? Miami activist Maria Peiro put it well in the comments for this piece: "The Conservative thing to do is to NOT give up the state and local control over the education of our children. The best form of government is that which is closest to the people. To centralize curriculum and testing and put it in the hands of a few is a huge mistake for which Read more