Sunday, August 24, 2008

Coleman's out-of-touch record: education

Original Link:

by: Jeff Rosenberg

(A good deal more important than conservative mouthpieces acting like children toward me....I'm promoting this back up to the top. - promoted by Joe Bodell)

This is the second in a series of weekly articles exposing Norm Coleman's record on the issues. Articles in the series will be collected here. All data in this series comes from CQ Weekly.

Norm "W" Coleman has such a long history of voting against education, I've had to narrow this post down to the most egregious. As usual, though, as the election began approaching, he started trying to appear more moderate. That's why we can't just look at his record in the last year: we have to look at his whole last term to see the real Coleman.


Norm Coleman wasn't in the Senate to vote on No Child Left Behind, but he got off to a rousing start by voting AGAINST an amendment to properly fund the initiative (SENATE ROLL CALL VOTE 5).

He then voted AGAINST an amendment that would increase spending on Head Start programs by $24 billion and increase spending on after-school programs by $18 billion, both over 10 years (SENATE ROLL CALL VOTE 86).

But he didn't just vote against little kids. He voted against young adults too, voting AGAINST an amendment that would increase spending on vocational education by $3.6 billion over 10 years (SENATE ROLL CALL VOTE 98), and another that would slow the acceleration in the reduction of the top tax rate and use the revenue for higher education financial aid programs (SENATE ROLL CALL VOTE 164).

And finally, in a busy year voting against education, Norm voted AGAINST an amendment to increase funding for Hispanic education programs by $210 million money for dropout prevention and language instruction (SENATE ROLL CALL VOTE 322).


Norm voted against vocational education again by voting AGAINST increasing funding under the Perkins Vocational and Technical Education Act (SENATE ROLL CALL VOTE 61).

He also once again voted AGAINST a motion to add $153 million for Head Start programs (SENATE ROLL CALL VOTE 272).


As 2008 approached and Norm's popularity declined, he decided to change his tune. This time he voted FOR restoring education program cuts and an increase in the maximum Pell Grant award to $4,500 (SENATE ROLL CALL VOTE 39).


Norm voted FOR a bill that would authorize $21 billion for education in science and math through fiscal 2010 (SENATE ROLL CALL VOTE 146).

After voting against student grants in the past, he now votes for them. He voted FOR increasing the amount authorized for the college access partnership grant program from $25 million to $113 million (SENATE ROLL CALL VOTE 254), and increasing the amount authorized for the new Promise grant program (SENATE ROLL CALL VOTE 255). He is one of only 4 Republicans to vote for this amendment. Would he have voted for it in 2003, without an election on the line?

Of course, he did show his true roots last year by voting AGAINST a funding increase for programs under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (SENATE ROLL CALL VOTE 94).

The bottom line: I'm not trying to accuse Norm "W" Coleman of "flip-flopping" on education. I'm accusing him of something worse: trying to mislead us on his record. When he thinks we're not looking, he votes against properly funding education. Then, when the election comes closer, he changes his tune. Here's a news flash, Norm: it's too late! You're out of touch, and it's time you were held accountable.

No comments: