Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal (R) said Thursday evening he is opposed to the Common Core standards and does not want his state to participate in them.
Jindal, considered to be a potential 2016 Republican presidential candidate, spoke to an audience at the annual conservative Republican Leadership Conference (RLC) held in New Orleans this year.
“I’m against the Common Core, and I don’t want Louisiana to be in the Common Core,” Jindal said to booming applause at the conference, according to a CNN report.
The fact that Jindal spent time discussing the Common Core once again emphasizes the significant role the nationalized education standards have taken in electoral politics.
Though Jindal once supported the Common Core standards, which Louisiana adopted in 2010, he states he now has come to see them as a federal intrusion into the states’ domain of education.
In a USA Today op-ed in April, Jindal addressed the popular pro-Common Core claim that the standards do not dictate curriculum.
“But just as certainly, if the feds dictate the standards of measure, the local curricula will have no choice but to follow,” he explained. “To succeed on Common Core tests, states will have to adopt curricula that teach to the tests. To think otherwise is folly.”
“It has become fashionable in the news media to believe there is a right-wing conspiracy against Common Core. The folks who think that need to get out more,” Jindal wrote. “The rebellion against federal government-mandated testing is widespread and is led by parents of all stripes and political persuasions.”
“If we get to the point where we are ignoring parents, we are making a big elitist mistake,” he concluded. “I have news for Washington: We can have rigorous standards without giving control to the federal government. Parents deserve a voice in this debate.”
As Breitbart News related, Louisiana parents, in fact, have reported being openly ridiculed, mocked, and even intimidated by pro-Common Core special interest lobbyists during state legislative hearings that focused on the standards.
At the RLC, Jindal addressed the fact that he is no longer supportive of the Common Core standards.
“We’ve taken a lot of criticism in this state from folks that have criticized me for being against it,” Jindal said.
“Let me be very clear: I’m for standards, and I’m for our kids learning and our kids being able to compete,” he continued, “but it seems to me that there is something fundamentally wrong when the bureaucrats, when the federal government especially, thinks they know best and they don’t need to listen to parents.”
Jindal likened federal overreach into education through the Common Core standards to similar intrusions through Obamacare and gun control.
On the left you’ve got this group that thinks we’re not smart enough to buy our own health insurance; we’re not smart enough to select our own schools for our children; we’re not smart enough, by the way, to exercise our Second Amendment rights; we’re not smart enough to decide what size soda we should be drinking, apparently.
NOLA.com reported that Jindal received a standing ovation when he said he believes President Barack Obama has sought to redefine the American dream.
Jindal said the American dream has always meant that “the circumstances of your birth don’t determine your outcomes as an adult,” but that Obama had manipulated that definition by replacing “equality of opportunity” with “equality of outcomes.”
“That’s not the American dream, that’s the American nightmare,” Jindal said.
While the Common Core standards were not repealed during the Louisiana legislature’s session, which ends June 2, Jindal said lawmakers may still have enough time to delay the measure “at the very least.”
The governor added that should the state legislature fail to do that, he and his attorneys are “looking at all possibilities we can take if the legislature does not act… looking at those different actions.”
“Gov. Jindal rightly speaks out against the Common Core,” said Emmett McGroarty, Education Director of the American Principles Project. “The task is to push back in fact against the federal government, to actually get rid of the Common Core, and to embrace a higher-quality education that the citizens of Louisiana alone control.”
Jindal’s speech followed that of Reince Priebus, chairman of the Republican National Committee. Texas Gov. Rick Perry and Sen. Ted Cruz will also address the convention. Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin made a surprise appearance to introduce Duck Dynasty star Phil Robertson.