How the GOP Turned on Common CoreBreaking News
tags: GOP, Common Core, The Tea Party
Chris Christie was for it before he was against it. So, for that matter, was Mike Huckabee. When the Common Core education standards were introduced in 2009 by the governors and school superintendents of 46 states, most of the would-be Republican nominees for president were for this voluntary approach to kids’ education. In 2013, Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal lauded the program, but a little over a year later, he was comparing it to Stalinism: “Let’s face it: Centralized planning didn’t work in Russia, it’s not working with our health care system, and it won’t work in education.”
Christie’s flip-flop was equally acrobatic. “We’re doing Common Core in New Jersey, and we are going to continue,” he thundered in 2013. By 2015, he was thundering against Common Core. “We need to take [education] out of the cubicles of Washington, D.C., where it was placed by the Obama administration, and return it to the neighborhoods of New Jersey.”
How did eliminating Common Core, a rather benign set of voluntary goals and best practices for teaching K-12 students, become one of the biggest applause lines in the Republican presidential race? (Only Jeb Bush and John Kasich are standing by the idea.) “It’s mystifying to me why there are individuals so entrenched in fighting this fight when you consider all the problems this country has,” says Dane Linn, vice president of the Business Roundtable, chuckling in exasperation. “How did Common Core become the whipping child?”
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