Monday, July 21, 2008

Utah Democratic Chair: McCain pro-voucher

It's the V-word all over again....

From Utah Democratic Party Chairman Wayne Holland, in an email to Utah Democrats:

It seems like déjà vu all over again

Did you see McCain last week talking voucher love in Cinncinati, bad-mouthing teachers, administrators, and elected officials, wanting to take money out of public schools and subsidize private academies?

Sounds familiar.

But Sen. Barack Obama was out there talking about investing in public education, putting money back into our schools to make them stronger. "We need to focus on fixing and improving our public schools; not throwing our hands up and walking away from them," he said.

Last year, Utahns decisively rejected an ideological experiment passed by Republican lawmakers and signed into law by the Republican governor. It would have been the nation's most comprehensive voucher program, an idea McCain has consistently supported in the U.S. Senate.

In 1999, he proposed an amendment to authorize $1.8 billion a year for three years to establish a pilot school voucher program. Then in 2001 he pushed vouchers as an amendment to the No Child Left Behind Act.

The differences between the two candidates are stark.

Sen. Obama believes in investing in our public schools as a way to provide the path to global opportunity, high-quality employment, and strong local communities. He proposes a multi-faceted approach that includes retooling NCLB, investing in early childhood education, recruiting and rewarding teachers, making science and math education a national priority, helping at-risk children succeed in school, enlisting parents and communities to support teaching and learning, and committing to fiscal responsibility.

Our likely Democratic presidential candidate reflects the sentiment of thousands of Utahns who voted "YES" to strengthening public education and "NO" to vouchers. Utahns said loud and clear that they'll control their schools. Thank you very much! Their kids aren't guinea pigs, and their futures won't be held hostage to educational experiments of radical right-wing millionaires.

If you voted against vouchers last year, I am asking you to do it again. Help us elect Sen. Obama president and strengthen public schools for every chlld. Help us keep McCain and his voucher profiteers out of the White House.

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