Clint Bolick Is Bad! But He’s Winning…

PFAW’s Kevin Franck attacks voucher advocate Clint Bolick in his most recent commentary on Jimmy Kilpatrick’s site with a list of grievances that seem to boil down to: Clint Bolick is a bad guy, doesn’t like affirmative action, and he hangs around with Clarence Thomas! Franck does make a good point about the irony of those demanding judicial restraint rushing to court to expand school choice. But I think he’s too sanguine about the potential of these lawsuits. He’s right about the legal history but this new tactic is cognizant of that, too, and I wouldn’t dismiss it out of hand. And, I don’t buy Franck’s assertion that vouchers are being roundly defeated. On the contrary, since 1990 — which I’d argue marks the real start of the latest push for vouchers — Milwaukee, Ohio, Florida, Colorado (since overturned by the courts), and Utah have passed voucher programs, and Milwaukee and Ohio have markedly expanded theirs, the federal government has passed one for Washington, D.C., and Florida, Pennsylvania, Arizona, and Iowa have passed tax-credit plans that look an awful lot like vouchers. Oh, and don’t forget a landmark SCOTUS case. That’s a lot of movement in just 16 years in a system that is designed to move pretty slowly…And, what exactly are the comparable wins from the public school establishment during that time? I’d have to say the voucher folks are winning and until the public school folks get their heads around that and really get in the game with serious alternatives, they’re going to keep winning. Thx to reader A. for the tip.

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