Rand Paul: Get the Feds Out of Education Policy

Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) (photo credit: Gage Skidmore, CC BY-SA 2.0)
Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) (photo credit: Gage Skidmore, CC BY-SA 2.0)

Rand Paul is on a roll.

First, he went on offense on an issue where Republicans all too often play defense: abortion. He called out the Democratic National Committee and Debbie Wasserman-Schultz for their radical position of allowing seven-pound babies to be aborted in the womb, simply because they aren’t born yet.

Now, he’s coming out swinging against the expanded role of the federal government in education policy.

Check out his comments made yesterday:

For a long time in the Republican Party, theres been a division—the conservatives have always felt like, we dont want much control of education, very little if any at the federal level. We think education is a state and local issue. But this battle has been fought for several decades now. When Ronald Reagan won in 1980, it became part of the platform that we were actually opposed to the Department of Education. I still am. I think it ought to go back to the states.

He went on to point out where Republicans went wrong on education policy:

But there have always been other members of our party, and when George W. Bush won in 2000, it came out of the platform. And actually under the Republican administration, we doubled the size of the Department of Education, we now have morphed into No Child Left Behind, and now Common Core. This is a deep philosophical divide in the party, and what youll see, and what Im seeing as I go around the country, is that there is a strong—nobody’s directing it from Washington, but everywhere I go, you heard the response to Common Core out here, you hear that response everywhere you go, and its a spontaneous movement that is unhappy about Washington telling them what kind of curriculum they can have in New Hampshire. Im going to continue to fight it, and I think itll end up being a key issue in differentiating candidates.

He’s exactly right. With Common Core and No Child Left Behind, education policy has been thrust into the national political debate, and people will be voting on it.

Americans across the political spectrum believe that local educators and parents should be in charge of their children’s education, not bureaucrats in Washington.

If the GOP nominates a pro-Common Core candidate for President in 2016, they will be forced to run against Hillary Clinton, who has no real Common Core baggage. That won’t end well.

Anyone running for President in 2016 should take note.

Terry Schilling is the executive director of American Principles in Action.