Election Sees Victory for Many Common Core Supporters
Millions of Americans went to the polls on November 4 to vote for local, state, and federal officials and representatives. For the better part of this past year, opponents of Common Core threw everything but the kitchen sink at candidates who support high standards. But in the end, the Standards once again demonstrated their resiliency. Here are some highlights of the midterm election results:
- Yesterday was, by and large, a net zero-change election insofar as the politics of Common Core is concerned.
- National opposition groups who made a massive attempt to drive election results based on this issue where dramatically unsuccessful.
- The Standards were a key issue in only a few races outside of those for state superintendent of education or state/local school boards of education. If the issue had any impact on legislative races, most of it was felt earlier in the year during the primaries.
- Specifically, CCSS factored as only a tertiary issue, if at all, in the vast majority of gubernatorial contests. Many pro-CCSS gubernatorial candidates won; several anti-CCSS candidates lost and some won.
- Twelve gubernatorial incumbents that strongly support CCSS won, many with strong margnis:
- Brian Sandoval, R-Nevada, 70%
- Bill Haslam, R-Tennessee, 70%
- Dennis Daugaard, R-South Dakota, 70%
- John Kasich, R-Ohio, 64%
- Terry Branstad, R-Iowa, 59%
- Jerry Brown, D-California, 59%
- Susana Martinez, R-New Mexico, 57%
- Butch Otter, R-Idaho, 54%
- Maggie Hassan, D-New Hampshire, 53%
- Dan Malloy, D-Connecticut, 51%
- Rick Snyder, R-Michigan, 51%
- John Kitzhaber, D-Oregon, 49%
- Of the 36 gubernatorial races voted on last night, Common Core was a notable factor in only four races, and among those four races (AZ, CO, NY, and PA), the candidate who was most supportive of Common Core prevailed in three of them:
- Incumbent Gov. Hickenlooper (CO)
- Incumbent Gov. Cuomo (NY)
- Tom Wolf (PA)
- There were only two notable races in which anti-CCSS forces prevailed, and those were in state superintendent races:
- Arizona state superintendent Diane Douglas
- Georgia state superintendent Richard Woods
- In the most closely watched state legislative races, little changed to alter the politics of Common Core.
- As we’ve said before, the formula employed by CCSS opponents is to perpetuate the false narrative that there is political momentum against the Standards.
- The truth is that Common Core State Standards are largely working as intended: States are tweaking the Standards – sometimes adding to them or closely scrutinizing them – but they are by and large resisting pressure to revert to lower standards. And they are doing so because the Standards are working for kids.
Read more post-election analysis here.