The Texas House of Representatives under Republican control voted against a school choice measure on Friday, drawing sharp criticism from Republican Gov. Greg Abbott.
The measure in question, aimed at creating a Texas Education Savings Account, was removed from a larger education bill. The removal came after Republican Rep. John Raney proposed an amendment, labeling the measure as an entitlement program. The amendment garnered support, passing with a vote of 84-63, including 21 Republicans in favor.
“I believe in my heart that using taxpayer dollars to fund an entitlement program is not conservative and is bad public policy, period,” Raney stated, as reported by The Center Square.
“I will continue advancing school choice in the Texas Legislature and at the ballot box, and will maintain the fight for parent empowerment until all parents can choose the best education path for their child,” Abbott remarked to the Austin American-Statesman. “I am in it to win it.”
“The small minority of pro-union Republicans in the Texas House who voted with the Democrats will not derail the outcome that their voters demand,” he added.
Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick also criticized the House’s decision. He referenced the Texas Senate’s repeated approval of school choice measures in recent years, including during special sessions. Just last week, the Senate had passed a bill proposing $8,000 per student for education-related expenses, applicable to both private and public schools.
Texas Sen. Ted Cruz also took a strong stance against the Republicans who voted against the school choice measure.
“The group of anti-parent Republican Texas State Reps. who voted today with radical unions over parents and kids to kill school choice should be on notice. Their actions today were completely shameful,” Cruz said in a statement on X. “Parents in these districts will work vigorously in the primaries to defeat them. School choice advocates are coming for these State Reps.’s seats, and they’re coming HARD.”
Scroll down to leave a comment and share your thoughts.