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Jonah Goldberg: How conservatives should promote school choice

By | March 19th, 2013

Gov. Chris Christie, R-N.J., might have been passed over to speak at CPAC 2013, but his confrontational comments about improving schools were highlighted by Jonah Goldberg when we interviewed the columnist about school choice at the conservative gathering.

“Chris Christie just the other day gave this wonderful stem-winder that’s gone viral on the Web where he confronts a heckler about school choice,” said Goldberg, the National Review Online editor-at-large and author. “He makes a great point about school choice - which is that there is no institution in America that can withstand a lack of competition for too long. And there are different forms of competition and whatnot…Whenever you have monopoly you have bloat. You have mandarins and bureaucrats that take over, who end up padding their own portfolio as it were at the expense of somebody else. And, I think that one of the things conservatives really have to work better at is explaining to people that school choice and issues like that aren’t simply ways to break the backs of teacher unions. They’re actually the best policies for improving the plight of young people.”

Our interest in Golberg’s take on school choice came after two potential candidates for the 2016 GOP presidential nomination, U.S. Sen. Rand Paul, R.-K.Y., and U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., each mentioned the issue in their CPAC remarks. [Paul went on to win the on-site CPAC Straw Poll--edging out Rubio 25 to 23 percent.]

“…I think every parent in America should have the opportunity to send their children to the school of their choice,” said Rubio

“There are millions of Americans, young and old, native and immigrant, black, white and brown, who simply seek to live free, to practice their religion, free to choose where there kids go to school,” said Paul.

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