Christian News Service: Palin opposes vouchers for school choice, is against amending Alaska Constitution, wants more money for teachers, was lauded by National Education Association

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The National Education Association in 2008 praised Sen. John McCain’s pick of Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin to be his running mate, in large part because she opposed school vouchers when she ran for governor two years earlier, and she supported increased funding for public schools.

Sen. John McCain supported school voucher; it was one of the areas where the two running mates disagreed on policy issues. That year, the mainstream media focused on the campaign tension over Palin’s wardrobe costs; some $150,000 in fashion purchases for Palin were billed to the Republican National Committee over the months she was the vice presidential nominee for the Republican ticket.

“The 3.2 million members of the National Education Association are pleasantly surprised by Senator John McCain’s selection of Alaska Governor Sarah Palin to join his ticket as the Republican nominee for vice president,” the labor union said in a news release on Aug. 29, 2008, the day McCain made his announcement of Palin as his running mate.

The shocking news was reported at the time not only by Christian News Service, but the right-of-center Washington Times, left-of-center Education Week, and others, such as the New Jersey Star-Ledger, where a conservative columnist said her statements on the need put more funding into schools and to pay teachers more was “heresy to conservatives.”

“While she is only in her second year as Alaska’s Governor, she has thus far shown herself to be a supporter of children and public education,” the NEA said in its statement.

“In her less than two years as the state’s chief executive officer, she was able to increase per-pupil education spending, and she is opposed to sending public money to support private schools through political schemes like vouchers,” the NEA continued. The statement has since been scrubbed from the NEA website but can be found widely online.

Palin is now running for Congress to fill the empty congressional seat resulting from the death of Congressman Don Young.

When Palin ran for governor in 2006, she spoke about education issues, including vouchers, with the NEA’s Alaska chapter, which asked Palin if she supported the use of vouchers, tax credits, or other programs that provide public money for students to attend private or religious schools.

Palin said vouchers were unconstitutional.

“No,” Palin said. “It is unconstitutional and it is as simple as that.” In the same interview, she said she would not support amending the Alaska Constitution to allow for vouchers so that parents could move their children out of government schools.

Palin told NEA-Alaska she wants to give parents as much choice and as many options as possible for educating their children, but “not public funding via vouchers.”

Instead, she stressed the need for vocational education, especially in “resource rich” Alaska, where so many skills are needed in the trades.

Paul Mulshine, a conservative columnist for the New Jersey Star-Ledger, noted that in her interview with the NEA-Alaska, “Palin spends the rest of the interview making it clear that she will support the interests of the union over that of the taxpayers. Palin has made the argument that she supports public schools because her father was a public school teacher, apparently unaware that this is a conflict of interest. And later in this interview she goes on to make a commitment to expand pension funding for public employees at the expense of taxpayers who may not themselves have pensions.”

“Palin sells out conservatives by opposing vouchers,” Mulshine’s reported after a 2008 debate Palin had with Joe Biden.

“Say it ain’t so, Joe, there you go again pointing backwards again,” Palin said on the topic of education during the debate. “You preferenced your whole comment with the Bush administration. Now doggone it, let’s look ahead and tell Americans what we have to plan to do for them in the future. You mentioned education and I’m glad you did. I say, too, with education, America needs to be putting a lot more focus on that and our schools have got to be really ramped up in terms of the funding that they are deserving. Teachers needed to be paid more.”

This story is largely rewritten from the Christian News Service’s website, where it appeared in 2008. CNSNews.com is a division of the Media Research Center, a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) organization. Like National Public Radio and the Public Broadcasting System, CNSNews.com is able to provide its services and information to the public at no cost, thanks to the generous support of our thousands of donors and their tax-deductible contributions. However, unlike NPR or PBS, CNSNews.com does not accept any federal tax money for its operations. Brent Bozell is the president of CNS, Media Research Center, and the NewsBusters.org website.

69 COMMENTS

  1. Let’s hope voters finally look past the cult of personality and see the liberal way Palin thinks. When Palin’s father was a school teacher, there may have been some hope remaining for our public school system, but not any more. COVID has demonstrated how the school system is totally broken and not operating in the best interests of children. Making children in their formative years isolate because OLD TEACHERS ARE AFRAID (AND BRAIN-WASHED BY MEDIA AND TEACHER’S UNION LIES ABOUT COVID), making children wear masks far beyond when everyone else had stopped wearing masks (AND BRAIN-WASHED BY MEDIA AND TEACHER’S UNION LIES ABOUT COVID), meanwhile many children committed suicide due to isolation and depression caused by all these lies. Palin is so far behind current knowledge about just about anything, she should not be in office. VOTE FOR NICK BEGICH. THE GOOD BEGICH.

  2. Unfortunately, what I remember about Ms. Palin is her propensity to point fingers at everyone else for any challenges she faced. How she used the trials and tribulations of her children to say ‘poor me/us’ without taking any responsibility for those trials. Face it, Palin is a drama queen and she’s looking for a wider screen in which to tell her saga.

  3. Suzanne, This information is 14 years old. Have you contacted her to she if she has updated her position? Many people have changed their opinions on this issue in the past decade.

    • Sapper1, they all have to run on their record, dude. Just like NB3 admitted he voted for Berkowitz in 2015. That was when he was like 30 something. But at least he admitted he made a mistake and he explained he was duped by the media and he didn’t understand just how leftist the media is in Anchorage. And he atoned for it by his grassroots work in the Republican Party and being Don Young’s campaign co-chair.

      Sarah has a lot of record to defend. A lot, like telling Ted Stevens to resign even though he was being illegally prosecuted in 2008….raising taxes with ACES, which was her bill…making Ethan “Butt Shot” Berkowitz her adviser on ethics. Cutting funding for the bridge to the Ketchikan Airport. Yeppers, all are in her public policy record, and that doesn’t even include endorsing the Democratic Walker-Mallott ticket for governor. It would be interesting to see what the lady has to say about vouchers now, but how about the rest of these? We’ll wait.

    • Sapper, where is Sarah? Hiding out trying to avoid the tough questions?
      Just curious, you must know that she is underinformed, educating oneself being so dreary and so forth for a Diva.

      • I am not supporting her. Just wondering if anyone bothered to ask her. We have her or Begich. Either is better than a Democrat. I personally wish she hadn’t run for the reasons you listed, but, here we are. If she IS elected it would be nice to know.

    • I agree. This has been a long 14 years! I’m accustomed to laughing when a news story comes out that really makes a democrat look bad and they note:
      “[outlet name] reached out to [subject’s] office for comment but has not received a reply as of the posting of this article”

    • I agree with Sapper Suzanne, you have shown a propensity to go after Palin with numerous articles. But before you completely throw her under the bus, have you asked her for an interview to clarify her positions for Alaskans? 2008 was a long time ago and with the current state of the country, and the crap going on in our schools, her positions may have changed. Going after someone for things done 14 years ago is a bit callous without approaching her on the issues.

    • Exactly Sapper1 ! Do we know where she stands today ? A lot of us had some different opinions in 2008. How about let’s ask Sarah.
      Suzanne, your dislike for Palin shows in your articles, and that’s OK, but at this point I think your readers appreciate an unbiased report about what’s happening now. I agree that if Palin supports this the 2008 stance on education, she has likely lost this election. The teachers union has been one of our greatest enemies in the current attempt to destroy our childrens education.

  4. Palin has always run on upholding the Alaska Constitution where it is written in black and white, no public funding of private or religious institutions. Begich has not stated support for the Constitution on this matter. They both ignore the privacy clause in their Pro Life positions

  5. I have a bridge to sell to anyone who thinks the NEA is something more than an arm of the Democrat party.
    .
    My first instinct is to ignore whatever they say, but my desire to see the issue from the other side, I usually read their comments. Then I regret not listening to my first instinct.

  6. I don’t agree with her prior opinions that paying public teachers and the public schools and unions is the way to go, they need a major cut in pay and benefits if you ask me, if not total defunding and/or re-education of our educational system to make it freedom, faith, and family friendly again, but I do agree with her that vouchers for homeschooling, private schools, and Christian schools probably isn’t the way to go if to want to have better choices than public schools. Whatever the government throws $ at is ruined. If they get government tax $ to function, and start to rely on those vouchers to exist, I can’t see how the government won’t insist on having the say in what’s taught in those schools and how they’re run. These vouchers seem to me to be a crafty way to get those who focus more on a good education to unwittingly take a bribe and give up some rights in the education of families who currently pay for a better education. Five years down the road we won’t just be complaining about public schools, we’ll be complaining about the government meddling in and messing up all of our educational institutions even more than we are now. I say this as a homeschool mom who says no thanks to government financial assistance in my kids’ education. No, not rich, just smart and hardworking, and willing to make some sacrifices for freedom, faith, and family.

    • Compare school vouchers to housing vouchers which enable recipients to rent in the open market which is far superior to government housing projects that invariably get labeled as ghettos. Imagine a government-run food store instead of food stamps (vouchers) used in competitive, private sector supermarkets. Also, borrowers can use government student loans to attend private Christian universities. There is no doubt that vouchers are the ultimate solution to the unionized failure of public education.

      • W Coogan, Good observation above but kindly consider the below.
        Food Stamps, Quest Card or what ever you call the Government food voucher has an economic cost for all consumers. This is especially seen in areas where the majority of food purchases are made with the aid of such vouchers. Turns out that the voucher recipient is less likely to care about the cost of an item since he or she did not EARN the money to buy it with. If they want an item it goes into the cart despite the cost. An astute merchant quickly picks up on this and raises the cost of all items. This means that the non voucher customer pays an increased sum for his purchases.

        My point being that when the Government gets involved in anything it tampers with true market forces. It isn’t hard to see where a voucher system could easily fall prey to mediocre outcomes.

        I understand your point Sir, but in the bitter end, Education is the sole responsibility of the Parents of a child. Vouchers may be of some value at least in the short term but are not a “magic bullet”.

        • This analogy is a good one. All our kids are getting our food from food banks. Some are better with fresher food (less moldy bread or expired dairy), more variety, have meat sometimes, or perks like toys and such; but the only choice you have is between them. Now introduce food vouchers and they can shop among a higher quality selection of food at the grocery stores.

          Where it is the common practice to shop at groceries with cash, food vouchers distort that market. But in education, it is the common practice to be trapped in government schools. School vouchers would be disrupting the government schools system. That is good if you consider disrupting the food bank system, by letting people pay for their own goods with food vouchers, a good thing.

  7. We don’t need any more money for education we need to go back to the real school and teaching the basics. This proves she does not understand the problem but just throw more money at it all the administration winds up with bigger incomes from raises. It’s a buy votes scheme as usual.

  8. Doesn’t matter. Palinbots will vote for her if she kills somebody in the middle of the Dimond Center Mall.

    Youbetcha.

    The saddest thing: if she’s the best we can do, we are going so blue it will be nearly midnight black.

  9. For one I recall Palin bailing on us as Governor. If the National Education Association is applauding her for wanting more money for teachers, and because she opposes vouchers, that’s strike two for her. I honestly believe that Palin is in the race for the money and not for Alaskans.

  10. So you are running a 14 year old article as if it is representative of her current views?

    What did she say about East High when she played point guard for Wasilla High?

  11. Beth Fread, excellent comment above.
    Palin is all about representing the idea of Palin and selling her brand. Her business model has paid her enormously in the past and with her running for congress it appears that her base in the lower 48 has become reenergized. (think $ and fame here)

    Except for her screech fest at Trump’s rally, has she done anything in Alaska lately?

    Despite the above I will still vote Sarah as my #2. I hope that the Palin fan club will do the same in regards to Nick. Electing a Democrat puppet will be disastrous for Alaska, eclipsing even the damage that Sarah’s short tenure representing herself in Congress will bring to Alaska.

  12. I can’t for the life of me see how anyone can vote for the wrecking ball that is Sarah Palin after all the damage she has done. Nick Begich may have to prove himself but at least he isn’t a vapid airhead. Go home, Sarah.

    • Nick the third is running a”glittering generalities ” campaign. In the tech world they call t Vaporware.. I’m sure he goes against he views of his business partner Mark and the rest of his family won’t be pressuring him

  13. Old news! In fairness lets see some MRAK stories about how Nick Begich made hie millions while a Washington, DC insider.

    • Fishing – Nick spent six weeks as an intern for Don Young. Did you want me to do a story about that? I would be happy to, if you think it’s good information. – sd

      • I believe the more information the better.
        Suzanne, I am not all fuzzy and warm about Begich as I just don’t have any track record or vetting to examine that I would consider in any way ” Objective ”
        The Begich Dynasty I do know…

      • Yes, that would be great and while you are at it how about a glimpse of how he made his money? It wouldn’t even have to be anything nefarious to make it newsworthy!

  14. Well…
    It appears at face value that Palin is the foregone conclusion.
    No, I am not a fan.
    Begich? From the Dynasty?
    Really?
    He is a darn good talker. That runs in the family.
    He is a ” Republican ”
    ( All that is required to be a Republican is to give the party a dollar )
    Man, I dunno. That is a far stretch.
    I have little to go on.

    I know one Devil.
    With Ranked Choice Voting though, stacked upon ERIC and Mail-in…
    I am putting it all on #17 Red.

  15. Yeah, a lot has happened in the last 2 years alone that has made a lot of conservatives a lot more conservative. I’m not convinced she still thinks we need to give more $ to public schools now that we’ve seen the lack of results. Many conservatives have been calling for more $ for schools and teachers for decades because we didn’t know Planned Parenthood and racist Marxists were teaching hate promiscuity and immortal sexuality of all kinds instead of academics. It would be more fair to ask Sarah directly what her current stance is on those issues directly. Before accusing Sarah of not wanting to answer those questions, we should ask if we’re the right person to ask those questions. If we’ve been unfair to Sarah in the past, of course her guard will be up.

  16. I remain convinced that male candidates bring spiritual strength to public service. Men are still taught to be gentlemen. They are innately gentlemen anyway by God’s design. Lately women are neither ladies nor gentlemen. Freedom is correlated with morality. At thus time in history we need our representatives not to be very easily deceived by enemies of our republic from abroad or enemies from within our borders who have succumbed to Madison Avenue or Hollywood depictions of a deformed Constitution. No automatic endorsement for chick’s at this time. They will have to substantially up their spiritual game which they are now more than ever after lifetimes of TV morality training perfectly unable to do. It’s just a defense of our republic’s last stand. Tight black lace lycra skirts notwithstanding.

  17. You people who support Sarah need to get a clue. It took me a couple decades before I figured her out. I will save you a lot of time and worry here. Vote for Nick Begich III.

  18. Your stories about Sarah Palin are always very negative and biased. Could it be because you are pushing for and support Nick Begich, the non-issue based campaign of Glittering Generalities? Should that be your roll? Comments that are non-friendly to NB III seem to disappear. NB III, who is in a business with Uncle Mark, uses the same I’ll stand up to …. campaign as uncle did with Obama, etc., Family would never have access or influence through calls, dinner table, family and holiday gatherings, etc., right.

    • Not a FAN, I respect what Suzanne has been doing here. She reports on Sarah’s public statements and policies from the past. Her endorsement for Billy Walker for example. No personal attacks, not about her family or kids or where she gets her money to buy homes out of State, or her choice of attire, only what is in the record pertinent to her Candidacy.
      I am happy that Suzanne has kept her reporting of Sarah factual and clean. She could report that at a South Anchorage Birthday Party Brawl where members of the Palin clan were “getting some” Sarah reportedly was screaming “Don’t you people KNOW who we are”! Things like that are off limits with Suzanne. Some might think that a story like the above would sell copy, but Suzanne keeps it straight.
      You see Fan, this election is important, who we send to Congress is important. We need to send someone who has the tools in the box to do the job for Alaska. Sarah isn’t the best choice on this Ballot.

  19. Thank you for reporting the truth Suzanne. It’s sad so many Palin
    bots will continue to ignore it and attack you instead.

  20. Your portrayal of the wardrobe issue is inaccurate, misleading and unfair. Information at the time was the RNC and the Mccain campaign were behind the clothing and wardrobe changes because they wanted to change her look. Not a diva issue.

    • Well, for someone running for the #2 in the Presidency…
      150 Grand on threads? That isn’t major.
      I was just amazed McCain managed to blow it with that fireball behind him.
      They took the girls clothes. Probably worth 5 cents on the dollar.
      Not that I am a fan at all.
      I spent $375.oo on two pair of shoes and two pair of blue jeans just yesterday… and it hurt.

  21. I moved to Alaska from the lower 48 a few years ago. Sarah’s not who I thought she was and I’m glad someone out there remembers all this stuff! Sarah worked with Democrats on a huge tax increase and then cut a giant check (socialist), killed 2 major Alaska infrastructure projects and then lied about saving the money, hired Democrat Ethan Berkowitz to write her ethics positions, asked Ted Stevens to resign, endorsed a Democrat ticket for Governor against her own Lt. Governor, resigned from office to stay famous, and was supported by the NEA because she was against school vouchers.

    To top it all off, I saw the debates and was at the Trump rally. She is not very bright!

  22. The more I hear, Sarah is a RINI. She endorsed the Bill Walker – Byron Mallott ticket and now hear that she OPPOSES school choice. She’s not my kind of Alaskan conservative.

  23. Anyone remember when Katie Couric asked Sarah what she reads? The blank look on her face was very telling, as was the long pause before her non-answer. She reads nothing and knows even less. I would wager she knows less about our Constitution than AOC.

  24. Sarah has a younger child with special needs.
    She has the money to take care of the extra costs for schooling. My taxpaying dollars should go to schooling and not just the federally back public schooling.

  25. So, instead of believing what Suzanne pulled out from 14 years ago, I went straight to Palins’ website. Here is her current stance on education.

    Education
    A good education empowers our children to succeed later in life. I’m proud of the public school system in Alaska – my son, Trig, currently attends Wasilla Middle School – but I also recognize that parents need to play the primary role in their children’s education.

    Students should not be stuck in a failing public school simply because of their street address. We need meaningful school choice, including vouchers that parents can use to send their children to higher-performing schools.

    We also need to support charter schools, which break up the teachers’ union monopoly and allow us to empirically test and evaluate alternative approaches to education. This sort of experimentation is key to ensuring that our public schools continue to grow and evolve so that they can provide the best possible educational experience for all of Alaska’s children.

    Our schools should not be indoctrinating children in leftist ideologies. Especially when school boards ignore the best interests of students and the intent of parents, we must take action to preserve the innocence of all children.

    So apparently, Suzanne’s apparent attack on Palins’ past is not what her current stance is. Palin, America First and endorsed by a very smart man who keeps his promises to America, Donald J. Trump.

  26. Sarah talks big but her actions often don’t match the talk. She’s supposedly pro-life but as governor, picked a judge who was involved in her sister’s good outcome for child custody to advance to the Alaska Supreme Court. This in spite of knowing that the judge was a former Planned Parenthood board member.

    Obama liked Palin’s pick so much he advanced her to the powerful 9th Circuit Court of Appeals where a case is now pending against the pro-life journalists who exposed Planned Parenthood selling baby body parts, changing abortion methods to obtain fresh organs and secretly selling maternal blood samples.

    The RICO and defamation part of Planned Parenthood’s case has already been dropped because through discovery, the journalists have proven they’re telling the truth and the Court ruled the journalists’ videos are not deceptively edited as Planned Parenthood claimed.

    Other charges are pending because in 2015, Kamala H. as CA AG decided to prosecute the journalists instead of investigating Planned Parenthood.

  27. There are a pair of SCOTUS opinions, one in 2020 (Espinoza v Montana) and the other this year (Maine) that render the AK Constitution prohibition of public ed $$$ for private religious schools unconstitutional. For some reason, Dunleavy has done nothing with them and the other Gov candidates are pretending they don’t exist.

    I think this discussion is over. It is only a matter of time before it comes to Alaska. Long past time. Cheers –

  28. I just looked at Sarah’s campaign website and on education it specifically states that she is FOR school vouchers! Along with quite a few other ideas this article claims she is against. People should really go to the source to get their info rather than read other peoples slanted opinions. You did a great disservice publishing this old tale, and I am not even a great Sarah fan.

  29. Suzanne, how would we find Nick Begich’s positions on this or any issues? I looked at his campaign website and cannot find his position on a single issue. It would seem appropriate that if he is asking for our donations that we would know his stance on a few issues. Education, wresting control of our resources from the federal government, the economy, government spending, national defense, CRT and woke agenda items in general, trannies in women’s sports and restrooms. Just a few ideas.
    BTW not a big Palin fan, she is better that a Democrat, but I know absolutely nothing about Begich’s positions.

    • Sapper, take a look at Sarah’s Campaign Finance disclosure sheet. See anybody you know on that list? No? That’s because all but a handful live out of State. Grassroots right?

      I’ve seen Nick’s list of donors, I know many of them, from all over Alaska. Huh, imagine that.

      Vote Nick B. III first and Palin #2.

      • That doesn’t answer my question. BTW I am not trying to be obtuse. I am not a Palin first person or emotionally tied to her. I DO want to know how Begich views those issues I listed. I am used to seeing campaign websites have a section where the candidate lists the issues important to them and how they would support their positions. Personally, I wish she had not decided to run and was embarrassed for her when she said that she was unaware ofnthe impact of ballot measure 2. But, here we are and I want enough information to make an educated decision.

  30. We will be a Blue State after Palin takes this.
    She was raised by 2 NEA dues paying teachers and it shows.
    I wonder if she is over at Alice Rogoff’s place discussing how to get Walker back.

  31. Her Father was a Teacher so maybe 14 years ago as I’m sure most people know things were a lot different! Your Bush Family Rinoism is quite obvious, I’m sure Nick isn’t totally innocent but you only attack one side of the street, you actually are pushing me to vote Palin.

  32. Sorry, not falling for the RINO traps about Palin. Due to her current stances on the issues and the endorsement of a very smart and politically astute man named Donald Trump, I will not waver in my support for Sarah. I have had enough of big talking politicians like Nick who give the short answers that makes people feel good and then stabs’ them in the back once in office. We have enough of them in office already. Murkowski, McConnell, Thune, Snow, Graham, McCarthy. All political hacks that have sold out America for their own gain. Enough is enough! It is time to go against the grain, swim against the current and make a stand for freedom. I will support Palin and if for some reason she doesn’t keep her promises to American families and the country, I will be the first to admit I was wrong and she will be a 1-term congresswoman. She deserves the 1 term to prove herself.

  33. An opinion from 16 years ago, factor in the downward spiral of the the education system and a person could change their position. It would be great to ask her.

    I think Must-read should be writing more about the lack of debates. Promote debate or a debate luncheon that you could charge admission to help support Must Read. I’d pay to see it. Have Dan Fagan be the moderator. Both candidates need to answer some hard questions.

  34. Pretty low for you Suzanne, its old and was what it was at the time. A little back story would be in order if you are going to pull this crap. Palin or anyone else, has nothing to do with The Who. Lisa murky i expect and see this, but you? Not cool.

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