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Common Core Repeal Falters In Louisiana

An attempt to repeal Common Core in Louisiana has hit a major snag, the latest problem to bedevil efforts to eliminate the standards in a deep red state.

Louisiana House member Brett Geymann introduced a measure to repeal the standards, and on Monday he made an effort to pass a motion to send his bill straight to a floor vote without being considered by the House Education Committee. Geymann said parents opposed to Common Core don’t believe they will receive a fair hearing in the education committee, which is generally supportive of Common Core and is expected to kill the bill.

“It is the perception of the parents. They have lost faith in the process,” Geymann told the House, according to The Advocate.

However, Geymann’s effort was shot down decisively, by a 61-37 vote that bodes ill for his bill’s ability to pass.

If the bill dies, it will be yet another defeat in what has been an extremely disappointing spring for foes of Common Core, who entered 2015 in high spirits following the big Republican win in the midterm elections. However, instead of rolling back Common Core, opponents have repeatedly seen legislation fail in many solidly Republican states, including Arizona, North Dakota and Mississippi.

A defeat in Louisiana would be particularly sharp, however, as opposition to Common Core has become the signature issue for Gov. Bobby Jindal, who is mulling a presidential run. Last year, he tried to force it out of Louisiana schools through a series of executive orders, and when his own state school board defied him, he became enmeshed in a series of lawsuits that are still ongoing.

The faltering efforts in Louisiana and elsewhere reflect a sharp divide among many Republicans on the issue. While Common Core is hated by many grassroots activists who view it as excessively federal meddling in educational issues, the standards are backed by many in the right-leaning business community.

Louisiana has seen a very contentious debate over the standards with the recent opening of its legislative session. Notably, last week supporters of the standards placed unicorn dolls on legislators’ desks, pushing the point that, like unicorns, many concerns about Common Core are not grounded in reality. Opponents of Common Core have bashed the unicorns as amounting to the ridicule of concerned parents.

“This is the most distasteful thing I have seen in my entire career as a public servant,” Geymann said in a statement last week.

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