The relevant summary:
Congressional or legislative incumbents generally tout their experience and “stand by their record,” trying to impress voters with the issues they supported and bills they sponsored. This is common and important. We judge whether the legislator represented us adequately and honestly and decide whether to vote for them or not. The current legislative races are following this pattern except for one thing which many incumbents just want you to forget as a “non-issue”…vouchers.
The polls showed that the public overwhelmingly rejected the concept of private school vouchers before, during, and after the referendum debate. The legislators who sponsored and voted for vouchers knew the public in general disliked the idea and knew who their dependable campaign donors were.
The legislators then strangely formed their own lobbying fund and lobbied the public using slick Utah Taxpayers Association materials, getting reimbursed for their time, mileage, etc. from the funds donated principally by Patrick Byrne.
In fact, due to lack of grassroots support, Patrick Byrne provided almost all of the funding for PCE’s entire pro-voucher campaign.
The public strongly rejected the flawed idea in the referendum vote. Voucher supporters, both within the legislature and from the general public, proceeded to insult 62% of
But you are supposed to forget all that and just “move forward.” The voucher vote was a year ago and is not relevant to the election today. Punishing legislators would be wrong. Just look at their record…except for vouchers. After years of stagnation, they voted to actually educate the large percentage of new student growth as well as increase school funding during two of the three largest budget surplus years in the history of the state of
Speaker of the House Greg Curtis has said vouchers are dead under his watch. Senate President Valentine said he thinks
"I don't know why folks keep dragging (the issue) up,"
Clarksaid. "To waste so much time looking backward when we have so many challenges ahead of us is a poor, poor direction."
Learning from the past is poor judgment. Got it.
Education is a voting issue! It is a cornerstone of our democracy and accounts for over half of the tax money spent in this state. Vouchers are a wealthy subsidy that would erode that funding for public schools. Basing a large part of your voting decisions on the differences between candidates’ positions on education—including vouchers—is prudent morally and financially. Don’t listen to vague name-calling and discussions of “one-issue” voters meant to divert attention from the many dismal legislative records in support of public education.