Kashkari assails Brown on plight of poor students

 

AP Political Writer

California's drowsy race for governor turned sharply confrontational Friday, as the Republican challenging Gov. Jerry Brown accused him of ignoring the plight of poor and minority students in struggling public schools.

The pointed attack from former banker and U.S. Treasury official Neel Kashkari centered on a June court decision that struck down tenure and other job protections for California's public school teachers.

The landmark ruling found that laws on hiring and firing in state schools protected the jobs of ineffective teachers, including many in schools crowded with minority and low-income students.

Brown has not discussed the decision or said if the state will appeal it. Kashkari said the silence of the Democratic incumbent shows his indifference toward needy students. Brown has long been close with teachers unions, which are some of his biggest political donors and want the ruling reversed.

Brown has a choice "between fighting for poor, minority kids or fighting on behalf of the fat union bosses who fund his campaigns," Kashkari said, noting that California public schools rank among some of the worst-performing in the nation.

"He has not spoken up for poor kids. He has not spoken up for minority kids," Kashkari said.

The contest for the state's highest office has generated only sporadic public interest. Brown, seeking a record fourth term, has held a wide lead in independent polls, and state Republican leaders are concentrating on congressional and other local contests.

Brown's campaign spokesman, Dan Newman, directed questions to the governor's Sacramento office.

Brown's spokesman Evan Westrup previously said the court ruling is tentative is being reviewed.

Kashkari's remarks outside an American Federation of Teachers convention in Los Angeles came a day after Republican lawmakers urged Brown to resist union pressure to appeal the decision.

Earlier, Brown received a standing ovation from union delegates after a speech in which he defended his education policies, including promoting a tax increase that benefited schools.

When asked if Brown should appeal the court decision, AFT President Randi Weingarten told reporters, "I think you have to actually ask Gov. Brown that question."

She said she understood the state would appeal, but didn't make clear how she knew that.

She added, "The fact that the governor was here today and spoke to our members ... about the things that we need to do together to help kids, I thought was a very important signal in a state like California."

Read more Politics Wires stories from the Miami Herald

  • Obama raises money at ‘Scandal’ creator’s home

    LOS ANGELES - President Barack Obama raised money from a Hollywood crowd here Wednesday night, joking about seeing pictures of Scandal star Kerry Washington’s new baby -- and jokingly accusing singer Janelle Monae of harboring a secret video of the president trying to outdance Usher.

  • Sullivan campaign reserves post-primary air time

    Republican U.S. Senate hopeful Dan Sullivan has reserved some air time past the Aug. 19 primary.

  • Glitch crashes global US passport, visa operations

    The State Department's global database for issuing travel documents has crashed, resulting in major delays for potentially millions of people around the world waiting for U.S. passports and visas, officials said Wednesday.

Miami Herald

Join the
Discussion

The Miami Herald is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere on the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

The Miami Herald uses Facebook's commenting system. You need to log in with a Facebook account in order to comment. If you have questions about commenting with your Facebook account, click here.

Have a news tip? You can send it anonymously. Click here to send us your tip - or - consider joining the Public Insight Network and become a source for The Miami Herald and el Nuevo Herald.

Hide Comments

This affects comments on all stories.

Cancel OK

  • Marketplace

Today's Circulars

  • Quick Job Search

Enter Keyword(s) Enter City Select a State Select a Category