In these 2 states, some Democrats are actually supporting school choice

School choice should be a nonpartisan issue. And increasingly, it seems like it’s becoming one.

Before the pandemic, school choice was somewhat of a niche issue. Only those parents most desperate for other options showed up to advocate for their kids at state capitols, and even many Republican politicians were not in favor of breaking up the government’s near-monopoly on education.

That all changed drastically as school lockdowns and zoom classrooms threw the problems within public schools into stark focus. Many families were left to fend for themselves as teachers’ unions kept schools locked down for political reasons. Others were appalled to hear the messages being drummed into their kids on a daily basis now that they could observe the lessons at home. And when those parents tried to use the democratic processes available to them to address these issues (showing up at school board meetings) they were falsely labeled as domestic terrorists and had the federal government sicced on them.

These actions created a landslide that has turned public sentiment in favor of school choice and made it one of the top issues in the GOP right now, at least at the state level. 

But while school choice bills have been sailing through committees and state legislatures across numerous red states, the issue has mostly still been decided along party lines. This makes little sense on its face, as Democrats purport to support the working class, the little guy, children, and especially, the black community. Yet these are the populations that would benefit most from school choice, as it is these demographics who are predominately stuck in the worst government schools.

Encouragingly, though, some Democratic politicians are breaking ranks to vote in favor of opportunity for all kids in their state. In Nebraska, three Democrats co-sponsored the school choice bill and voted in favor of it earlier this year.

And in Florida, where a universal school choice bill just sailed through its fourth House committee, we’re seeing a similar trend. During the House Education Quality Subcommittee on Friday, two Democrats voted in favor of the bill. Bipartisanship on this issue is seemingly becoming a pattern in the Sunshine State, as the same thing happened in an earlier committee as well.

Corey DeAngelis, a prominent school choice advocate and the Executive Director of the Educational Freedom Institute, said, “Some Democrats are starting to buck their party’s trend by siding with families as opposed to teachers’ unions. That’s a smart political move.” 

“Parents are the new special interest group in town, and they aren’t going away any time soon. It’s also the right thing to do. The latest RealClear Opinion Research polling on the topic found that a supermajority of Republicans, Democrats, and independents support school choice. It should not be a partisan issue. Hopefully, as more parents fight back, politicians from all parties will listen to the needs of children as opposed to the desires of the monopoly,” DeAngelis continued.

If what we care about is the best interests of each and every single child, school choice wins on every front. It allows parents to pick the educational options that are best for each unique child. It forces schools to actually compete for our tax dollars. It benefits society as we will have a more educated population, which impacts everything from economic growth to crime to family stability. 

And it even leaves more money per student in the classroom in public schools as the federal dollars still stay put if a child chooses to go elsewhere. This is a win for absolutely everyone…  except the bureaucrats who’ve made a living trapping kids in their institutions by force and leaching off the public dime.

Unfortunately, many Democrats have been beholden to the teachers’ unions due to their donations for decades. So, to see some Democrats breaking ranks and standing up to their friends for what’s right is commendable. As J.K. Rowling said, “It takes a great deal of bravery to stand up to our enemies, but just as much to stand up to our friends.”

Americans for Prosperity Florida (where I am a consultant), has been hugely instrumental in the school choice push and had this to say about the matter: “AFP Florida State Director Skylar Zander is excited that HB1 passed its fourth and final committee with bipartisan support and is now heading to the House Floor. We look forward to working with the State House and State Senate in passing this transformational policy this session.”

School choice should be a nonpartisan issue. And increasingly, it seems like it’s becoming one.

Disclaimer: Hannah Cox is a consultant for Americans for Prosperity, which works on these issues.

Like this article? Check out the latest BASEDPolitics podcast on Apple PodcastsSpotify, or below:

YouTube player

Sign up for Our Email List

* indicates required
*By signing up for our email you consent to getting our emails directly in your inbox. These including our newsletter or other informational emails*

Our Latest Podcast

Related articles

Nikki Haley goes viral for INSANE claim about TikTok

I’m used to hearing politicians say crazy stuff. But...

Tennessee Republican fights for key education reform

Tennessee Governor Bill Lee announced his support for universal...

Thomas Massie is right: Anti-Zionism is not anti-Semitism

Only one Republican voted against the House resolution that...

How you know US aid to Ukraine might be coming to an end

Lindsey Graham said on CNN’s State of the Union...

Rand Paul: Why did the Left abandon its defense of free speech?

Rand Paul asked a great question. The answer is simple:...
Hannah Cox
Hannah Cox
Hannah Cox is a libertarian-conservative writer and co-founder of BASEDPolitics. She's also the host of the BASEDPolitics podcast and an experienced political activist.