Education Swamp's Favorite Republicans Kill Veto-Override Session
Sens. Rogers Pope and Bodi White Publicly Came Out Against a Veto-Override Session Early, Killing Hopes for Parents to Have Choice in Their Child's Education
Senate President Page Cortez today confirmed what had become obvious last week: The State Senate will not convene a veto-override session this year.
While disappointing, this outcome was not unexpected after the Education Swamp's two favorite Republican Senators, Sens. Rogers Pope and Bodi White, publicly said they would not attend a veto-override session or would vote against overrides last week. Once they made their pronouncements, any hope of a successful override was killed- negating the need for the session.
Among the bills vetoed by Governor Edwards were those that would give parents of children with special needs and those who have fallen behind grade-level in reading Educational Savings Accounts (ESAs) to help find an education that fits their unique needs. While these bills passed with overwhelming bi-partisan support, Governor Edwards vetoed them, repaying the millions of dollars teacher's unions spent getting him elected. Louisiana's public education swamp, including the Louisiana School Boards Association, the teacher's unions, and Louisiana Association of School Superintendents, made defeating these bills their top priority this year- hoping to keep parents and children trapped in a failing public education system that isn't meeting their needs.
It should come as no surprise then that Sens. Pope and White put the nail in the coffin on a veto-override session. Both were among the few Republican recipients of pre-session campaign cash from the teacher's unions, who vehemently oppose even the most limited school choice policies- those for children with special needs. Senator Pope has been a long time ally of Louisiana's public education swamp, being awarded by the Louisiana Federation of Teachers and receiving the Louisiana School Boards Association "Legislator of the Year Award" multiple times during his years in office.
Senator White, for his part, spent the last days of the Regular Session playing interference for the public education swamp, with his efforts to kill multiple ESA bills in his Senate Finance Committee. He even tried to stop the mother of a special-needs child from testifying in support of an ESA Bill that would have helped her find a more-suitable education for her daughter. Sen. White's heavy-handed efforts drew backlash from his colleagues in the House of Representatives- but at the end of the day, his allies in Louisiana's education swamp have to be pleased with his work.
Once again, the education swamp wins, and Louisiana families lose.
You can read all of our past stories on Louisiana's education swamp here.