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Senate Confirms Education Secretary Who Believes Opposition To Common Core Is Racist

Is it any wonder that the conservative base has zero faith in the Republican party standing up to Obama’s Supreme Court nomination – a nomination that could skew the court leftward for a generation, when they can’t even stand up to a man whose legacy is the bumbling, stumbling implementation of Common Core in New York?

Seven Republicans joined Democrats in confirming an Education Secretary whose time in New York was an epic debacle, where the state led the nation in Common Core testing opt-out rates. An Education Secretary who, even the willfully ignorant Democrat [score]Kirsten Gillibrand[/score] refused to confirm because he “was very adversarial, leaving families, students and teachers without a voice on important issues. An Education Secretary who told parents that if they did not support Common Core, then they were racist.

Yet, here we are – by a 49-40 roll call vote (7 Republicans and 1 independent joined 41 Democrats) we now have new Secretary of Education, John King.

Understand that, had Republicans held their party line – you know, the way Democrats do for President Obama and their base EVERY SINGLE TIME – King would not have been confirmed.

Via the Daily Caller:

President Barack Obama extracted a notable concession from the Senate Monday, as the Republican-controlled chamber voted to approve John King as Obama’s new secretary of education.

King has been serving as acting secretary of education since late December, when previous secretary Arne Duncan stepped down. King was confirmed 49 to 40, with a few Republicans joining almost every Democrat present.

Republicans voting yes – [score]Lamar Alexander[/score], Tenn.; [score]Bill Cassidy[/score], La.; [score]Thad Cochran[/score], Miss.; [score]Susan Collins[/score], Maine; [score]John Cornyn[/score], Texas; [score]Orrin Hatch[/score], Utah; [score]Mitch McConnell[/score], Ky.

The Heritage Foundation writes:

While the department’s implementation of ESSA is problematic, there are also significant concerns with King’s background. He was New York State’s Education Commissioner from 2011 to 2014, during which he forced the implementation of Common Core and a stringent testing regime on the students and parents of New York.  During this tenure, he faced massive opposition from the grassroots as well as teacher unions.  Even the liberal-leaning Washington Post, in an article entitled U.S. legislators give Obama’s education pick an astounding pass, reported that:

King’s program sparked the largest testing opt-out movement in the country, with some 20 percent of all students refusing to take the Common Core standardized tests mandated by the state last spring. New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D), who supported the principles of King’s reform, lost faith in his ability to lead the implementation. King left his job abruptly late last year — with some ‘goodbye and good riddance’ messages, including one December 2014 newspaper editorial titled ‘Commissioner King’s Tone Deaf Legacy’…”

Not only is King an advocate of Common Core and standardized testing, he has shown little to no regard for student’s privacy, advocating for national databases like inBloom.  According to the Home School Legal Defense Association, whose advocacy arm is also opposed to King’s confirmation, inBloom was a “controversial company formed with a grant from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to create a national database of student-specific data.”

Worse, King has an Obama-like tendency to frame everyone who opposes his ideas as racist. The new Secretary of Education mirrored his predecessor, Arne Duncan, in saying that opposition to Common Core is designed to hurt minorities and low-income families.

In 2014, King took the opportunity to discuss racial segregation in the Brown v. Board of Education anniversary, to allege that Common Core standards are designed to bridge the education gap between minorities and white students.  King said that parents and teachers who back away from Common Core risk hurting minority and low-income students.

Via the Times Union:

… King spoke about the struggles minorities and low-income still face in the educational system.

King said racial and socioeconomic disparities among students still have an effect on academic achievement levels. He said only 15 percent of black and Latino high school graduates are ready for college-level work, while half of white students are sufficiently prepared.

King said the Common Core standards are an attempt to close the achievement gap between minority and low-income students relative to their peers. He urged parents and educators to not back off of their commitment to the Common Core standards or else risk hurting these students’ chance to succeed in and out of the classroom.

This – THIS is the man Republicans felt they had to appease Obama with through confirmation?

An article in the Washington Post countered King’s claims, saying the Common Core system in reality means that “many of our students of color, poverty, disability and our English language learners will have doors of opportunity shut.”

Not just white suburban mothers, Mr. King.

A staggering 20% of students in New York opted out of Common Core testing this past year, a number that sticks directly to Secretary of Education John King.

You have seven Republicans to thank when King brings his incompetence to the national level.

Rusty Weiss

Rusty Weiss is a freelance journalist focusing on the conservative movement and its political agenda. He has been writing conservatively charged articles for several years in the upstate New York area, and his writings have appeared in the Daily Caller, American Thinker,, Big Government, the Times Union, and the Troy Record. He is also Editor of one of the top conservative blogs of 2012, the Mental Recession.

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