Idaho Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Luna, an education adviser to GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney, says President Barack Obama's "refusal to speak out against the teachers strike in Chicago represents an abdication of leadership."
Luna's statement came in a news release issued by the Romney campaign in Boston late Monday.
Obama's adopted home town is Chicago, where he met former Chicago school superintendent and now-U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan. Obama's former chief of staff, Rahm Emanuel, is now Chicago's mayor and is pitted against teachers in the two-day-old strike. In past years, Luna credited Obama and Duncan for supporting linking student performance to teacher evaluation. That issue is a major point of contention in the strike.
The statement follows, in full:
IDAHO SUPERINTENDENT OF PUBLIC INSTRUCTION TOM LUNA: PRESIDENT OBAMA MUST LEAD
Boston, MA – Idaho Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Luna today made the following statement on the strike by the Chicago Teachers Union:
“President Obama’s refusal to speak out against the teachers union strike in Chicago represents an abdication of leadership. The President frequently talks about the need for education reform which will give every child the skills they need to be successful in the 21st century and a chance at the American Dream. But his silence inhibits those very things and yields to the whims of special interests at the cost of students. We need a president who will stand up for the students of Chicago and across the country. Mitt Romney will not put politics over principle. He will lead.”