Republican-led Legislature didn’t make up the rules

For the Monitor
Published: 7/5/2016 2:00:07 AM

In a My Turn article in the June 18 Monitor, it was pointed out that the Republican leadership disregarded the will of the majority because two bills that were passed by both houses in different forms did not make it through the final legislative process.

This legislative process is done by both Democrats and Republicans when either party has a majority in both houses. The implication was that the actions by the legislative leadership disregarded the will of the majority. The article went on to say that the electorate should be mindful of those actions when selecting their elected representatives in the next election.

Well, these two bills were never passed into law because they were in different forms and had to go through the Conference Committee process where there was not agreement on their final wording. So those bills were not passed into law.

If the Democrats controlled the Legislature, the same legislative process would have been used by them.

However, there were two bills that were passed by both houses of the Legislature and went through the Conference Committee process. Gov. Hassan vetoed both of them. These two bills would have protected the rights of parents to determine, one, if they wanted to have their children tested with an assessment test rather than an achievement test. The other bill protected the rights of parents to “opt in” to non-academic surveys that the state wants the students to be subjected to. Assessment testing and non-academic surveys query our children about their behaviors, cultural values and attitudes. Parents should not be put in a position to decide whether to have their children take these tests unless parents specifically give permission to do so. If we gave achievement tests, like we have done for the last 30 years, these laws would not have been an issue. However, the U.S. Department of Education is attempting to take control of our schools and these assessment test requirements are one way in which they can achieve their goal without parental or local school board consent.

The governor and the Democrats say they are for working families but they are taking every advantage to take their parental rights away while these families are at work and not able to attend Legislative hearings to fight for their rights. So as the article from June 18 said, “remember these issues in November when you vote.”

(Joseph Mendola is a Republican candidate for state representative for Warner and Webster in Merrimack County.)

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