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A Connecticut Neo-Liberal in the Koch Brothers’ Court: A Cautionary Tale for 2020

February 19, 2018

Whenever I read about “Centrist Democrats” who might be plausible candidates to oppose Donald Trump I get a chill because many of them, like “Centrist” Governor Daniel Malloy of Connecticut, are often willing to adopt the positions of the Koch Brothers if it suits their “reform” agenda. Yesterday’s post by Diane Ravitch describing Governor Malloy’s advocacy for the expansion of 529 plans is a case in point. Quoting at length from a retired Connecticut school teacher who is calling out the Governor in her state, Ms. Ravitch offers a detailed explanation of how the expansion of “Education Savings Accounts” will draw funds from the public school coffers and redirect them into the coffers of private sectarian and private for profit schools.

As I noted in a comment I left at the conclusion of the post:

The ALEC playbook is not read only by libertarians… the neoliberal “reformers” like Malloy, Cuomo, Booker, HRC, and– yes, Obama— all like any gambits that undercut unions and empower privatizers… in 2020 those of us who want to take public education in a different direction need to avoid supporting ANY Democrat, particularly those who are good public speakers strike a seemingly sane alternative to our current Prevaricator…

I haven’t witnessed anyone emerging from the pack who will stand up for public schools or the need for us to expand government regulations. Instead Democrats seem content to run on the “Not Trump” platform and hope that they can retain the support of the billionaires who favor deregulation and privatization while activating their base voters who loathe the divisiveness of our current leadership. We need more than an anti-Trump if we hope to restore faith in government and democracy. We need someone who will give full throated support for the rule of law, for re-regulating Wall Street and the environment, and for restoring the social justice that has unravelled. Anyone who supports the expansion of 529 plans should not receive the support of any thoughtful progressive.

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