Scottie Nell Hughes, news director of the Tea Party News Network, says she does not understand why big business is poised for a fight against the tea party over the Common Core academic standards.
"This has been completely interesting to watch the Chamber of Commerce decide to get involved in an issue that you would think they would be on the side of those of us wanting to repeal Common Core, and yet they're probably our biggest fighter, and I have to wonder, what teachers union flavor of Kool-Aid did they decide to drink at their last meeting?" she told Newsmax TV's John Bachman and J.D. Hayworth on "America's Forum" Monday.
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Asked why conservative groups are so suspicious of Common Core, Hughes replied,
"That's the real question of the hour right now because the truth is not getting out, and I'll be honest with you, there's a lot of fear being handled on both sides of this issue. No one is against, find me the American citizen that does not want a better education for our children, our communities. Find me the person that wants to have a lower standard set for our children. It doesn't exist. So for them to sit there and, especially the Chamber of Commerce, say oh, the folks that are trying to get rid of Common Core are against standards. That's exactly opposite."
"The question is, whose standards are we setting? Are we setting the standards of the progressive, left agenda that created Common Core? Are we setting the standards that are academically strong and reflect the majority of the values of the American people today? That's what we need to discuss is what standards are we actually setting here when it comes to Common Core?" she said.
Hughes argued that conservatives have supported positive initiatives such as charter schools.
"Charter schools are a great example, and here's the funny thing. We saw last week [New York City Mayor Bill] de Blasio go and take probably the highest rated, standard school that he had and shut it down. So if Common Core was all about raising standards, why did de Blasio shut down the one school that was raising the standards of his own community?" she asked.
"There is an alternative, and this is what the majority of conservatives and the majority of those of us that are against Common Core have been screaming. There is an ulterior motive behind Common Core. It's not simply just about accelerating our math standards, our English standards. That's exactly opposite. It's more about indoctrinating our children and reading between the fine lines of what they're trying to get our children to feel and not necessarily think on their own."
Hughes noted that a lot of people are watching to see what happens in Tennessee, where the House voted to delay Common Core.
"We have a Republican House, Republican Senate, a Republican governor, two Republican senators, only two Democrat congressmen out of the rest of them being Republican. If you cannot repeal Common Core in the state of Tennessee, then it's probably not going to be done in many other states, despite them trying to change the name," she said.
"It did pass in our House. The problem is it goes to our Senate now, and like with most red states, the problem is our enemy within. It has been said our governor, Bill Haslem, is for Common Core. He likes the standard, and this is what people have to realize. Common Core has been in our state for years. This whole Educate & Grow or Rise to the Top, when we were getting federal funding, none of these state legislators read the fine print. So they signed on the dotted line, signing away our children's lives.
"And the truth is that the devil's sitting here, and the devil being the federal government, offering you millions of dollars, there's usually a price tag that comes with it. In Tennessee, the price tag's $501 million we took to bring on this idea of new educational standards. Now, if we repeal it in the state of Tennessee, on that dotted line where we signed our name, we would have to pay back the federal government 100 percent, which would bankrupt the state of Tennessee.
"Gov. Bill Haslem is not going to do that, he will veto it, and now we're just kind of sitting here. But we want to see him actually put his name on the line because I promise you, that will not go over with the majority of taxpayers and voters within this state," Hughes added.
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