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Big School Choice Election Wins in Idaho

The Idaho legislature may be controlled by Republicans, but teachers unions rented enough members to defeat a sweeping school choice bill last year.

In GOP primaries this week, the anti-school choice Republicans suffered a series of brutal losses. Senate Pro Tem Chuck Winder was defeated in a stunning upset. Rep. Julie Yamamoto, who chaired the House Education Committee and opposed school choice, lost to challenger Kent Marmon. Several other incumbents lost while Rep. Wendy Herman (the House’s most outspoken school choice supporter), defeated a union-backed candidate.

The Idaho Federation for Children spent more than $400,000 promoting pro-school choice candidates, and proved that the evil empire of teacher unions can be defeated if there is anything close to a level financial playing field on the issue.

A school choice bill is now much more likely to succeed in Idaho next year.

This coming Tuesday, an even more important test will take place in Texas where a lot of attention has been spent on the role school choice is playing in GOP primary runoffs. Allies of Texas Governor Greg Abbott are close to beating enough anti-choice incumbents to make passage of a universal school choice bill likely next year.

The teacher unions are still powerful, but elections this year in state after state are showing their hold on both parents and educators is weakening.

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