Conservatives and Education Leaders Speak Out in Support   

Statement from Senator Ken Paxton on opposition to CSCOPE and Common Core:

“I have a clear record of fighting CSCOPE, Common Core, and the liberal education agenda of President Obama.   As Attorney General, I will continue that fight.

From the very first meeting in January called to investigate the charges being brought forward from parents and educators, I was immediately concerned.   After scrutinizing CSCOPE, I was deeply disturbed by the CSCOPE content and had significant legal concerns about the program’s operations.  Parents were not allowed access to instructional materials, and teachers potentially faced criminal punishment if they shared CSCOPE content.

As a member of the Senate Public Education Committee, I worked diligently to seek answers as to how CSCOPE was functioning without accountability.   The elected State Board of Education (SBOE) has a rigorous process in place to develop the Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills; this process is designed to ensure that students have high quality, accurate materials in our schools.  Because this process was being bypassed, I believed that the entire CSCOPE program should be shut down until a thorough investigation was complete.

I worked collaboratively with the legislature, SBOE, parents, educators, and concerned taxpayers to hold CSCOPE accountable.  I co-authored Senate Bill 1406 to require the State Board of Education to review CSCOPE.   Even though that bill passed, I have continued to demand answers.   I was one of 12 legislators co-signing a letter requesting the State Auditors’ Office to perform an audit of CSCOPE.  We are still waiting on the results of this examination.

I voted for HB 462, the legislation that banned Common Core Curriculum in Texas.   President Obama’s social justice agenda, promoted through Common Core, poses a real danger to our education sovereignty.  These liberal efforts seek to impose a national education curriculum that may not teach traditional American values, history, and education fundamentals.

As Texas Attorney General, I will vigorously defend the legislation I helped pass and hold accountable anyone who tries to usurp your right as a parent or misuse taxpayer funds.  There may be future attempts for non-reviewed instructional materials to be incorporated in our school districts or attempts by the federal government to coerce the state into imposing standards through attaching regulations to federal funds.  As Attorney General, I will ensure our state laws are enforced so our state sovereignty in connection with education materials can be preserved.

As a father of four and a husband to an educator, my record is one of standing for the rights of parents to control their children’s education.  I am the only candidate in this race endorsed by Tim Lambert and the Texas Home School Coalition.

This issue underscores why I am running for Attorney General:  Texas is the last, great hope against complete federal intrusion and the office of Attorney General is the front line of defense in that battle. This office is the line in the sand – the only thing standing between President Obama and the State of Texas. As the first legal line of defense against the federal government’s quest for control over our lives, the office of the Attorney General is the “tip of the spear” in this crucial battle.  I’m running for Attorney General because there is too much at stake, and I am willing to fight to ensure that the Lone Star State remains a beacon of freedom and liberty to the nation.”

Conservative education leaders who have been active in the battle speak out:

“Senator Paxton worked with me in my efforts to expose CSCOPE, and his efforts were important in the battle to ensure that parents – not government bureaucrats – have the final say in the education of their children.  Senator Paxton’s leadership in exposing CSCOPE helped enable the State Board of Education to place CSCOPE under our purview.   Ken Paxton is a principled conservative who will make an outstanding Attorney General.”
Hon. Barbara Cargill, Chair, State Board of Education

“Ken Paxton and I entered the State House together back in 2003, so I have worked with him both in the Texas House and as a member of the State Board of Education.   Ken has always been not only a solid conservative vote, he has worked to fight CSCOPE and other harmful policies which undermine the rights of parents to control their child’s education.   He voted for HB 462 to prohibit common core curriculum in Texas.   In August, 2013 Senator Paxton was one of 12 legislators co-signing a letter requesting the State Auditors’ Office to perform an audit of CSCOPE.   While some candidates are new to this battle, Ken Paxton has been fighting for accountability and transparency in education for over a decade.   I trust Ken Paxton to continue that fight as our next Attorney General.”
Hon. Ken Mercer, Member, State Board of Education; Former Member, Texas House of Representatives

“Ken Paxton’s voting record in the Texas House and Senate has been 100% conservative, whether on education, taxes or social issues. He is adamantly opposed to CSCOPE and to Obama’s national curriculum called Common Core. Voters can rest assured that he will be as conservative in the future on these issues as he has proven to be as a State Representative and State Senator.  I encourage my friends to let Ken Paxton’s record speak for itself and to beware of campaign promises from candidates that have NO VOTING RECORD.”
Cathie Adams, President, Texas Eagle Forum*

“While serving on the Senate Education committee, Ken Paxton provided strong leadership in exposing CSCOPE. Ken was a co-author of the CSCOPE legislation which gave the elected State Board of Education oversight of the Regional Education Service Centers’ work on curriculum.  Ken didn’t just complain about CSCOPE, Ken took action. Ken was a leading voice on the education committee that forced the regional centers to comply with the law and release their secret curriculum to parents. I know from experience that we can trust Ken Paxton to protect our children. Actions speak louder than words and Ken is a man of action.”
Peggy Venable
“During the CSCOPE battle, Senator Ken Paxton actively reached out to me personally to find out what was happening with the CSCOPE bill even after it had been voted out of the Texas Senate.  He brought me in his office, asking how he could help push this bill through to final passage.  Ken Paxton has a record of fighting for Texas parents when it counts, and has aggressively opposed Common Core and CSCOPE.”
Kara Sands, Corpus Christi (Texas activist mom known as a leading voice in fighting CSCOPE)

“During my service on the State Board of Education, Ken Paxton could always be counted on in our efforts to stand for parental rights, ensure truthful principles in our textbooks, and oppose revisionist history in our classrooms.   He’s a man of character and a fighter for conservative principles, and I’m proud to endorse him for Attorney General.”
Hon. Terri Leo, Former Member, State Board of Education

“Ask almost any state senator or state representative and they will tell you the bill that Michelle Smith worked the hardest on this past session was protecting our children against CSCOPE. Senator Ken Paxton served on the Senate Education committee in the Senate and was always active in the fight to pass these bills. If I ever needed to understand how the language could impact our children, I would go to Senator Paxton.  Ken Paxton vigorously opposes CSCOPE and voted against this legislation to allow common core in Texas.   Also, to increase public scrutiny of CSCOPE, Senator Paxton co-authored SB 1406, a bill to place CSCOPE under the oversight of our State Board of Education.  From the beginning of the session, Ken worked with Sen. Dan Patrick and Sen. Donna Campbell on these bills.  In short, in the race for Attorney General, no other candidate has the stellar, proven record of fighting CSCOPE like Ken Paxton.”
Michelle Smith, State Director, Concerned Women for America of Texas*

*organization listed for identification purposes only

To download a PDF version of this statement, click here.