Kaine on SF School Board Recall, VA Election: I Worry about Threats Against School Boards, VA Had Good System Under Dems

On Thursday’s broadcast of MSNBC’s “MTP Daily,” Sen. Tim Kaine (D-VA) reacted to the San Francisco school board recalls by stating that Virginia’s education system was strong under Democrats, the pandemic has taken a toll on parents and students, people in San Francisco were frustrated with the priority of the school board, and he’s worried about violence and threats against school boards.

Host Chuck Todd asked, “To me, it reframes, a little bit, the Virginia governor’s race and what we saw at parental outrage and I think it’s a clearer picture for people that this was not about critical race theory, but this was about frustrations at government competence, if you will, at can you get this done, can you do what you’re saying, can you take care of our kids? How should Democrats look at what happened in Virginia now, given what we saw in San Francisco and those school board recalls?”

Kaine responded, “Well, look, under Democratic leadership in Virginia, we have some of the best public schools in the nation, right? I mean, what do you want to look at, SAT scores, NAEP scores, the quality of our student performance, the quality of our higher ed institutions? Under Democratic leadership, it was high. But, look, the pandemic has taken a toll. It’s taken a toll on parents, taken a toll on kids, taken a toll on teachers and others. And sure, there was huge frustration, and I’m not — I don’t live in San Francisco, but, what I hear is, overwhelmingly, the voters are like, you guys were more focused on renaming schools than you were on creating a learning environment that was safe. And if that happens, yeah, you’re going to find that local people will switch out their local leadership and they’ll put somebody else in.”

He continued, “What I worry about, and we saw this in Virginia, it’s one thing to say, I don’t like what the Loudon School Board does, it’s another thing to send a letter to their house saying, I’m going to kill you and your children. The violent threats against these poor school board members, most of whom are parents with kids in the school who want to run for next to no money, no pay, to try to do a good job. The kind of violence and threats and insults against them really go beyond the pale. I hope we can rein that back in, but you have to acknowledge it’s been a real difficult time for parents and kids.”

Follow Ian Hanchett on Twitter @IanHanchett


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