Saturday, January 16, 2010
"I'm gettin' real close ..."
I'm getting real close to officially endorsing Shelby County DA Bill Gibbons for gov'na.
Of all the GOP candidates who appeared at the SCORE education debate on Thursday, Bill Gibbons was the most impressive of the lot. (Nashville Post's Adam Kleinheider said much the same thing.)
To be fair, the SCORE debate - which I just watched today 'cause I was out of town when it "happened" live - wasn't really a debate. Each participant had only one minute to answer the questions asked of 'em, and there weren't any real rebuttals.
That said, Gibbons' responses were are focused on real reform -- i.e., making it easier for working professionals and retirees to enter the teaching profession, lifting the cap on charter schools and expand their presence statewide, developing standards of parental involvement, more "school choice," etc. -- and, for the most part, he avoided generalities. The same can't be said for his opponents. Indeed, Democrat Kim McMillan's quips were so vanilla, if you will, that she sounded like she was appealing to the Tennessee Education Association and militant school-voucher proponents simultaneously.
Education is a subject very near and dear to my heart. I didn't almost complete all the classes necessary to get a teaching license when I was in graduate school for nothing. When it comes to education, Bill Gibbons is sprinting ahead of the TN gubernatorial pack. If he keeps it up, I'll soon be affixing one of his bumper stickers to the back window of my car.