Can you join us on Facebook as we Stand Up for Texas Kids?
Since Rick Perry and House Republicans have been in charge, they’ve been desperately trying to cover up the widening funding gap they built into the state’s finances. This year, that crack has become a canyon, and they’ve left Texas in the deepest budget hole in generations – up to $27 billion.
Public schools, colleges, universities, and medical care for the elderly and ill are under greater threat than ever before. It’s a real and potentially devastating emergency. In yesterday’s New York Times,1 Paul Krugman gives a snapshot of what bad Republican policies have done to Texas children:
“And in low-tax, low-spending Texas, the kids are not all right. The high school graduation rate, at just 61.3 percent, puts Texas 43rd out of 50 in state rankings. Nationally, the state ranks fifth in child poverty; it leads in the percentage of children without health insurance. And only 78 percent of Texas children are in excellent or very good health, significantly below the national average.”
While it won’t clean up all of Perry’s mess, there’s a big, $830 million pot of money sitting in Washington, DC, just waiting to be put to use in our schools.
Why isn’t Rick Perry taking the money?
Instead of standing up for our kids, Rick Perry has gotten the funds tied up in a partisan political fight.2 He’s more concerned with using his crusade against Washington to build a national platform and sell books, rather than making sure our schools stay intact.
All Perry has to do is agree to spend the money on our schools – as have 48 other states – instead of dumping it into his slush fund for corporate welfare, or plugging all the rest of his budget holes. So far, he’s refused.
Now, Perry’s trying to distract Texans and turn their attention to his own handpicked list of “emergency items”3 – bills that impose new requirements on voters, intrude in women’s private healthcare matters, and increase government interference in our lives.
Perry’s $10 billion in cuts from public education mean more school closures, layoffs for thousands of teachers, and kids being packed into overcrowded classrooms where they’ll find it more difficult to learn.
Don’t let the Perry budget steal opportunities away from our kids. From Pre-K to college – from kicking 100,000 kids out of pre-kindergarten4 to drastically scaling back higher education loans and grants5 – the success of our children – Texas’ future – is at stake.
Stand Up for Texas Kids today, and demand Rick Perry sign and swear he’ll spend money meant for our kids, on our kids.