Resolution to censure these Democrats for undermining public education, contravening the Constitution, and aiding Republicans
WHEREAS Republicans have been trying for years to undermine public education by under-funding it and then blaming teachers and public schools for (poverty-related) low performance by students;
WHEREAS the State Constitution says that public education is the “paramount duty” of state government; that there should be a “general and uniform system of public schools”; and that “the entire revenue … shall be exclusively applied to the support of common schools”;
WHEREAS the state Supreme Court ruled in the McCleary decision that public schools are under-funded and later held the legislature in contempt for refusing to fund education;
WHEREAS the state Supreme Court ruled that charter schools are unconstitutional;
WHEREAS Democrats Judy Clibborn, Steve Hobbs, Christopher Hurst, Ruth Kagi, Kristine Lytton, Jeff Morris, Mark Mullet, Eric Pettigrew, David Sawyer, Tana Senn, Larry Springer, Pat Sullivan, and Tim Sheldon voted for SB 6194, the charter school bill;
WHEREAS Governor Inslee allowed SB 6194 to become law;
WHEREAS SB 6194 funds the existing charter schools and authorizes the creation of additional charter schools, even though McCleary is not yet funded; and
WHEREAS, regardless of whether the state Supreme Court rules SB 6194 to be unconstitutional, support by Democrats for SB 6194 legitimizes the notion of charter schools, empowers Republicans to argue that the current Supreme Court justices are too liberal, and moves the needle to the right on the issue of government funding for education;
WHEREAS the state Democratic Party Platform explicitly opposes charter schools;
WHEREAS handing a major bipartisan victory on this issue to Republicans in an election year strengthens their stature, gives them bragging rights, and increases the chances of their receiving funding from pro-charter school forces;
WHEREAS the narrow passage of I-1240 (the charter schools initiative) in 2012 was due to massive funding by the Walton family, Bill Gates, and other wealthy people opposed to public education;
WHEREAS the narrow support by the public for I-1240 is no justification for supporting charter schools, any more than past support by the public for Tim Eyman initiatives is any justification for supporting tax breaks for billionaires;
WHEREAS the charter school vote was contrary to the wishes of major Democratic constituencies, including Labor, teachers, and progressives;
THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that we Democrats censure the behavior of these lawmakers.
by Donald A. Smith, PhD, PCO (41st LD, Bellevue)
For more context see Why did these Dems deliver a major victory to Republicans in an election year?.
On facebook some supporters of the Green Party put up a meme image suggesting that only Jill Stein would end our militaristic foreign policy. Here’s the image:
Aren’t Bernie and Rand much less hawkish than the others? Anyway, the Green Party hasn’t a snowball’s chance in hell of making much of a difference, much less winning. Bernie Sanders might actually win the Presidency! And the movement he created may reinvigorate democracy. Why is it that angry conservatives take over the GOP but angry progressives typically flee the Democratic Party (with their tails between their legs)?
With all its problems, the Democratic Party is still easier to reform than the country in general. In WA State especially (where I live), if the thousands of Bernie supporters who showed up at the caucuses showed up regularly to Legislative District meetings we could make real progress and we can send the corporate Dems packing.
The leftist guy responded, “Existing Democratic Party people make it pretty unpleasant to show up to meetings, so they won’t.” That was a perfect opening for this:
I agree it’s unpleasant. But, sorry! The revolution will not be pleasant. If you can’t handle some unpleasant corporate Dems you might as well give up!
The Legislative District caucuses on Sunday were unpleasant: tedious and long. One caucus (the 27thLD) started at 1PM and finished at 12:45 AM in the parking lot,, after getting kicked out of the school! Perhaps the unpleasantness of Democratic Party meetings is a feature meant to discourage participation. But, seriously, politics is inherently unpleasant often.
Another gripe (while I’m on this rant): leftists need to learn how to get along and cooperate! Too many leftists are allergic to any sort of hierarchy or cooperation that requires agreeing to majority rule. That’s one reason why the Occupy Movement wasn’t as successful as it could have been: the Occupiers were all into mic checks and unanimity. Talk about unpleasant process! (Another reason the Occupy Movement was less successful than it could have been is that the police ruthlessly suppressed it.) The Tea Party on the right took over the GOP and seated scores of lawmakers in Congress. Can leftists/progressives organize to take over the Democratic Party? Or are they too averse to unpleasant things like voting and debates and meetings and majority rule?
Millions of young, motivated progressives are participating in Democratic Party primaries, caucuses and meetings, thanks to the leadership of Bernie Sanders. But many hard-core leftists (Socialists and Anarchists) still insist on fleeing from the Democratic Party. What are they afraid of? Dealing with unpleasant corporate Democrats? A little hierarchy?