A Common Victory

Well, well, well. What a difference a day makes, eh?

Wednesday night the state Senate Education Committee defeated anti Common Core legislation by a 7-2 vote. The Commercial Appeal reports that before yesterday “the votes that had taken place have ended with Common Core opponents on the losing end.”

So what happened? People are waking up and legislators are hearing you because they voted in the House by a huge margin to delay Common Core for two years in Tennessee.

The CA concludes “opponents staged an ambush Thursday on the floor of the state House.” Ambush? Were they held captive and forced to vote that way? Of course not.

Then the CA bemoans that it was done by a “coalition of Republican and Democrat lawmakers.” That’s funny, because media is usually saying our politicians should work together for the common good and put aside party differences. They do, and the CA scoffs.

It’s more than disappointing to learn that Republican Mark White of Memphis voted for Common Core and was angry at its defeat. Why on earth would he feel this way?

David Fowler of Family Action Council of Tennessee explains more of what it means:

Today the Tennessee House passed House Bill 1129 (Senate Bill 1266), to which two substantive amendments relating to Common Core were adopted. The original bill also included provisions relating to teaching students about the historical documents and principles related to the United States and our form of government. You can find the procedural actions taken on the bill on the Tennessee General Assembly website. The names of those voting for and against the bill and the two substantive amendments are below.

One amendment (No. 5 in the record) delayed implementation of Common Core standards until July 1, 2016. It is not clear what effect this amendment will have, since some Common Core standards (math and language arts) have already been adopted and implemented.

The second amendment (No. 7 in the record) delayed further implementation of Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Career (PARCC) assessments (tests) until July 1, 2016. PARCC is considered a critical aspect of full implementation of Common Core.

House Bill 1129 will now be sent over to the Senate. Senators will have to vote to accept or reject the two amendments mentioned above. If the Senate accepts them, then the bill will be passed and sent to the Governor. The Governor can sign the bill into law, let it become law without his signature, or veto it.

If the Senate rejects the amendments, the House will have to vote to take the amendments off the bill (“recede from their actions”) or refuse to take them off (“refuse to recede”). If the House’s action does not wind up being the same as the Senate’s action, then the bill will go to a conference committee composed of a limited number of House and Senate members appointed by their respective Speakers. The conference committee can come up with a different version of the bill, if it so chooses. Any conference committee report must be accepted by both the House and Senate to pass.

One potential major issue is whether delaying the PARCC assessments will cause an increase in cost to the state. If so, then the bill will most likely be sent back by the Senate and referred to the House Finance Committee. The House Finance Committee would then have to vote to approve the bill and fund the cost in the budget. Depending on the magnitude of the cost, there may not be sufficient funds to pass the bill and the bill will die in committee.

The names of those state Representatives voting for and against the bill and the two amendments follow.
Final Votes on House Bill 1129, as Amended

Passed
Ayes: 82
Noes: 11

Representatives voting aye were the following: Akbari, Alexander, Armstrong, Bailey, Brooks K, Butt, Calfee, Camper, Carr D, Carr J, Carter, Casada, Coley, Cooper, Dean, Dennis, Doss, Durham, Eldridge, Evans, Faison, Farmer, Favors, Fitzhugh, Floyd, Goins, Halford, Hall, Hardaway, Harrison, Hawk, Hill M, Hill T, Holt, Jernigan, Johnson G, Jones, Keisling, Lamberth, Littleton, Lollar, Lynn, Matheny, Matlock, McDaniel, McManus, Miller, Mitchell, Moody, Odom, Parkinson, Pody, Powell, Powers, Ragan, Ramsey, Rich, Roach, Rogers, Sanderson, Sargent, Sexton, Shaw, Shepard, Shipley, Sparks, Spivey, Stewart, Swann, Tidwell, Todd, Towns, Turner J, Turner M, Van Huss, Weaver, White D, Williams K, Williams R, Windle, Wirgau, Womick-82.

Representatives voting no were: Brooks H, Dunn, Forgety, Haynes, Johnson C, Kane, Lundberg, Marsh, Pitts, Travis, White M-11.
Final Votes on Amendment 5 (Delaying Standards)

Passed
Ayes: 80
Noes: 6
Present and not voting: 2

Representatives voting aye were the following: Akbari, Armstrong, Bailey, Brooks K, Butt, Calfee, Camper, Carr J, Carter, Casada, Coley, Cooper, Dean, Dennis, Doss, Durham, Eldridge, Evans, Faison, Farmer, Favors, Fitzhugh, Floyd, Forgety, Goins, Halford, Hall, Hardaway, Harrison, Hawk, Hill M, Hill T, Holt, Jernigan, Johnson C, Johnson G, Jones, Kane, Keisling, Lamberth, Littleton, Lollar, Lynn, Matheny, Matlock, McDaniel, McManus, Miller, Mitchell, Moody, Odom, Parkinson, Pody, Powers, Ragan, Rich, Roach, Rogers, Sargent, Sexton, Shaw, Shepard, Shipley, Sparks, Spivey, Stewart, Tidwell, Todd, Towns, Travis, Turner J, Van Huss, Weaver, White D, White M, Williams K, Williams R, Windle, Wirgau, Womick-80.

Representatives voting no were: Haynes, Lundberg, Marsh, Pitts, Powell, Turner M-6.

Representatives present and not voting were: Brooks H, Dunn-2.
Final votes on Amendment 7 (Delaying Testing)

Passed
Ayes: 88
Noes: 0

Representatives voting aye were the following: Akbari, Alexander, Armstrong, Bailey, Brooks K, Butt, Calfee, Camper, Carr D, Carr J, Carter, Casada, Coley, Dean, Dennis, Doss, Dunn, Durham, Eldridge, Evans, Faison, Farmer, Favors, Fitzhugh, Floyd, Forgety, Goins, Halford, Hall, Hardaway, Harrison, Hawk, Haynes, Hill M, Hill T, Holt, Jernigan, Johnson C, Jones, Kane, Keisling, Lamberth, Littleton, Lollar, Lundberg, Lynn, Marsh, Matheny, Matlock, McDaniel, McManus, Miller, Mitchell, Moody, Odom, Parkinson, Pitts, Pody, Powell, Powers, Ragan, Ramsey, Rich, Roach, Rogers, Sanderson, Sargent, Sexton, Shaw, Shepard, Shipley, Sparks, Spivey, Stewart, Swann, Tidwell, Todd, Towns, Travis, Turner M, Van Huss, Weaver, White D, Williams K, Williams R, Windle, Wirgau, Womick-88.

Now we will have to make sure our state Senators get the message and help defeat the monster of Common Core.

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