State-Level Education Tax Credits Merit Place Near Top of Pro-Liberty Agenda

While we’re busy waging battle on the defensive fronts against Obama Care and cap-and-trade and card check, pro-liberty forces also would be wise in 2010 to continue looking for opportunities to go on offense. Writing at the Washington Examiner, Michael Barone makes at least one point that deserves the attention of activists, strategists and officials:

[Tech entrepreneur Jim] Manzi, citing models in Sweden and the Netherlands, calls for “the creation of a real marketplace among ever more deregulated publicly financed schools — a market in which funding follows students, and far broader discretion is permitted to those who actually teach and manage in our schools.”

Democrats are prevented by their teacher union paymasters from pursuing such goals seriously; witness their battle to kill a small school voucher program in the District of Columbia. Republicans could do much better, starting at the state level and daring the Obama administration to stop them in Washington.

Since the ruling Democrats in Congress have effectively snuffed out D.C.’s successful voucher program (or as Moe Lane puts it, resegregrates the D.C. school system), it’s time to step up the push for K-12 education tax credits (both for tuition scholarships and family expenses) in different states both as an empowerment tool and as a money saver for state government.

One more agenda item around which to rally the forces of liberty.


  1. Jim Manzi says

    Thanks for the comments.

    As a long-time advocate of vouchers, one thing I argue (briefly) in the piece that he cites is that the key issue is freedom from some constraints plus consumer power, whether within what we call “public” or what we call “private” school sectors. I expect to go into to this in a lot more detail in a book I am writing based on this article.

    Best regards,
    Jim Manzi

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