Sam Brownback on Education
Republican Sr Senator (KS)
A: I live in the town of Topeka, Kansas. Brown v. Board of Education was decided in my hometown. I believe we still need integration taking place in the schools, and I think it’s an important thing. I think we need to do it on a voluntary and incentivized basis as much as we possibly can, but it is important for us to maintain it as a goal and objective of this country.
HUCKABEE: Whether God did it in 6 days or whether he did it in 6 days that represented periods of time, he did it, and that’s what’s important. If anybody wants to believe that they are the descendants of a primate, they are certainly welcome to do it. But I believe that all of us are the unique creations of God.
BROWNBACK: It’s interesting that we’re doing this here, at Saint Anselm’s--that saint had a philosophy of faith seeking reason. I believe we are created in the image of God for a particular purpose. And I am fully convinced there’s a God of the universe that loves us very much and was involved in the process. How he did it, I don’t know. One of the problems we have with our society today is that we put faith and science at odds with each other. They aren’t at odds with each other. If they are, check your faith or check your science. And we should engage faith and reason, like Saint Anselm did.
Q: I’m curious, is there anybody on the stage that does not agree, believe in evolution?
[TANCREDO, HUCKABEE, and BROWNBACK raise their hands, indicating that they do not believe in evolution].
McCAIN: I believe in evolution. But I also believe, when I hike the Grand Canyon and see it at sunset, that the hand of God is there also.
ALITO: Plessy was certainly wrong.
BROWNBACK: Brown v. Board of Education overturned Plessy, after Plessy had stood on the books since 1896. It was depended upon by a number of people for a long period of time. You’ve got it sitting on the books for 60 years, twice the length of time of Roe v. Wade. You’ve got these number of cases that considered Plessy and upheld Plessy. Now, stare decisis would say in the Brown case you should uphold Plessy. Is that correct?
ALITO: It certainly would be a factor that you would consider in determining whether to overrule it.
BROWNBACK: But obviously, Brown overturned it, and thank goodness it did. Correct?
ALITO: The court got it spectacularly wrong in Plessy. And it took a long time for that erroneous decision to be overruled. Separate facilities, even if they were identical, could never give people equal treatment under the law.
Proponents support voting YES because:
Rep. OBEY: This bill, more than any other, determines how willing we are to make the investment necessary to assure the future strength of this country and its working families. The President has chosen to cut the investments in this bill by more than $7.5 billion in real terms. This bill rejects most of those cuts.
Opponents recommend voting NO because:
Rep. LEWIS: This bill reflects a fundamental difference in opinion on the level of funding necessary to support the Federal Government's role in education, health and workforce programs. The bill is $10.2 billion over the President's budget request. While many of these programs are popular on both sides of the aisle, this bill contains what can rightly be considered lower priority and duplicative programs. For example, this legislation continues three different programs that deal with violence prevention. An omnibus bill is absolutely the wrong and fiscally reckless approach to completing this year's work. It would negate any semblance of fiscal discipline demonstrated by this body in recent years.
Veto message from President Bush:
This bill spends too much. It exceeds [by $10.2 billion] the reasonable and responsible levels for discretionary spending that I proposed to balance the budget by 2012. This bill continues to fund 56 programs that I proposed to terminate because they are duplicative, narrowly focused, or not producing results. This bill does not sufficiently fund programs that are delivering positive outcomes. This bill has too many earmarks--more than 2,200 earmarks totaling nearly $1 billion. I urge the Congress to send me a fiscally responsible bill that sets priorities.
The National Education Association has a long, proud history as the nation's leading organization committed to advancing the cause of public education. Founded in 1857 "to elevate the character and advance the interests of the profession of teaching and to promote the cause of popular education in the United States," the NEA has remained constant in its commitment to its original mission as evidenced by the current mission statement:
To fulfill the promise of a democratic society, the National Education Association shall promote the cause of quality public education and advance the profession of education; expand the rights and further the interest of educational employees; and advocate human, civil, and economic rights for all.In pursuing its mission, the NEA has determined that it will focus the energy and resources of its 2.7 million members toward the "promotion of public confidence in public education." The ratings are based on the votes the organization considered most important; the numbers reflect the percentage of time the representative voted the organization's preferred position.
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