During an event last Friday in Barrington, NH, Senator Cruz was asked about his position on Common Core. He told the crowd of 200:
I think we should repeal every word of Common Core. Look, education is far too important to have it governed by unelected bureaucrats down in Washington. Education, I mentioned before in response to the first question, I’m a constitutionalist. Over and over again as questions come up, my touchstone is going to be: What does the constitution of the United States say?
If you look at the Tenth Amendment, or as President Obama calls it: the what? The basic protection that says the powers not given to the federal government are reserved to the states and to the people. That means the federal government has no authority to do things like set the curriculum in education. That needs to be at the state level or, even better, at the local level. And ma’am the reason for that, you actually described beautifully, which is, listen, if it’s at the local level, you can go to the Stratford County school board meeting, and if the curriculum being taught to your kids doesn’t make sense, you can make your voice heard. You can speak out and say, ‘this isn’t right.’
Every one of us should have control over what’s being taught to our kids. If it’s bureaucrats in Washington: They don’t care what you think, or I think. It’s about accountability to the people.That’s the answer: getting back to the constitution, back to the freedom this country was built on, and it’s ultimately about empowering the people. That’s why y’all are here.
As a U.S. Senator, Cruz can’t repeal Common Core as it wasn’t federal legislation. However, Cruz can continue to advocate against a federal role in education, which he rightly views as against the Tenth Amendment to the Constitution. Cruz feels as many feel: federal control of education is another example of the federal government overstepping its constitutional authority. The Pulse’s own Shane Vander Hart writes:
The point should be made here – states can (and should) repeal the Common Core. That’s a given. What Congress should do is, at the very least, take away discretionary spending power from the U.S. Department of Education and block grant education dollars back to the states eliminating federal strings from being attached to money. This is the heart of what I believe Cruz is talking about.
If that’s what Cruz meant, then he is certainly correct. The states should be taking the action that is well within their power and repeal Common Core, and many states have been taking steps to do just that.
Joshua Pinho works for American Principles in Action.