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    Alabama state legislature defeats union, passes school choice

    Alabama state legislature defeats union, passes school choice

    Last week. the Alabama legislature passed a bill approving school choice in a speedy series of votes that, according to one report, left the Senate “in chaos” when the Democrats realized what had happened. In reaction to being out-gamed, Democrats in the state House and Senate have been enacting a sort of filibuster, reading full texts of bills and slowing down government with lengthy Q&A sessions. In addition, the Alabama Education Association has backed a lawsuit alleging lawmakers were in violation of the Open Meetings Act.

    The legislation, which provides income tax credits to those in failing school districts, as well as provides tax credits to those who donate to scholarships that help provide for the cost of alternative schooling in these districts, essentially provides for school vouchers.

    In response to the Democrats’ sour grapes, Alabama Speaker of the House Mike Hubbard said, “At the end of the day if we don’t pass as many bills, that’s OK. We’re the party of smaller government.”

    Daily Caller’s Jeff Poor writes that the Republican legislature, which has been attempting to push back union control of the state, has been enacting reforms akin to what Governor Walker enacted in Wisconsin:

    The newly elected Republican legislature and Republican Gov. Robert Bentley enacted measures to prohibit public employees from having dues for political activities paid through payroll draft. That measure is much like what Wisconsin Republican Gov. Scott Walker and that state’s Republican-led legislature pushed in 2011.

    But perhaps the biggest blow to the AEA came last week when the state legislature passed the Alabama Accountability Act of 2013, which made school choice, private or another public school, possible for the family of a student, if he or she is attending a failing school.

    The GOP has now asked the Supreme Court to act quickly and allow the bill to go to the governor, filing an emergency motion with the Alabama Supreme Court.


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    Mark Michael | March 8, 2013 at 1:07 pm

    The most encouraging thing about the Daily Caller story is that it said that all of the Alabama Supreme Court judges were Republicans. Hopefully, they’ll rule to overturn the Montgomery County Judge’s restraining order blocking the legislature from sending HB 84 to the governor. Gov. Bentley has said he’ll sign it once it gets to his desk.

    It may take until March 15, since Judge Price has since extended his temporary stay until then. The Supreme Court may decide to let that period elapse as a courtesy to a fellow judge. So we may have to wait another week to find out if it’ll become law. TBD.

    Subotai Bahadur | March 8, 2013 at 1:24 pm

    Interestingly enough, we have heard nothing from the Journo-List 2.0 media or their pet RINO’s McCain and Graham complaining about this filibuster. After all, according to the Dud-ly Duo, aren’t all filibusters bad? Or maybe just Republican filibusters. Yeah, I know, its a state issue, but the target was there.

    For that matter the underlying school choice and public employee unions issues here have not had any real coverage. Could it be that after Wisconsin, the media want to keep these topics quiet to avoid other states getting ideas?

    Subotai Bahadur

    Same Same | March 8, 2013 at 1:43 pm

    When Republicans act like Republicans, it can be AWESOME!

      TrooperJohnSmith in reply to Same Same. | March 8, 2013 at 5:35 pm

      It has to do with possessing the thing that separates bulls from steers. So many national republicans lack that thing. Or more accurately, things.

    legalizehazing | March 8, 2013 at 1:57 pm

    This is the action, the doing that builds trust with voters. Some of the best PR for Republicans has come from the state level where crafty driven Repubs are getting the job done.

    Seriously, praise the Lord.

    “In response to the Democrats’ sour grapes, Alabama Speaker of the House Mike Hubbard said, ”At the end of the day if we don’t pass as many bills, that’s OK. We’re the party of smaller government.””

    This has got be right up there with Rand Paul’s quote about dropping hellfire missiles on Jane Fonda.

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