We believe Arizona voters should pass Governor Ducey’s landmark Proposition 123 on May 17th to settle lawsuits over the state’s K-12 public education system. It’s a $3.5 billion injection of new money without raising taxes. The new revenues come from future sales of state land.
The measure is an impressive, bi-partisan compromise.
Yet, some who have jumped on board, primarily from the left, want to hold it hostage as they ratchet up the rhetoric against an effort in the Arizona State Legislature to expand school choice.
Pass expanded student options they say and we may – or will – abandon support for Proposition 123 their threats go.
But let’s play this out. If Republicans do pass expanded school choice and Proposition 123 craters where are public schools then? It’s the worst of all worlds for these sirens from the left. And they will have largely disqualified themselves from a relationship with a Governor who is going to be in place for seven more years.
Proposition 123 is the best opportunity Arizona public schools have had since 2000 to gain new resources, and unlike then, they come without a tax hike.
Enough with the legislative brinksmanship. Get Proposition 123 passed and argue the merits for why a very aggressive expansion of school choice is ill-timed or ill-advised. Receptive audiences may be found. But crater this Governor’s most important priority and watch next year’s legislative proposals go from disconcerting to radical. Two can play that game, after all.