The House is expected to pass a measure Thursday that some Republican lawmakers are grumbling was gutted of provisions supporting families with home-schooled children.
Language from the Student Empowerment Act expanding tax-advantaged savings accounts to cover K-12 education expenses was included in the version of the Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement, or SECURE, Act unanimously approved by the Ways and Means Committee, according to GOP aides. But the text related to 529 savings accounts was taken out by the House Rules Committee, a panel heavily influenced by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif. The staffers allege House Democrats “caved” to teachers unions and “a small handful” of their conference because the bill text would have applied to home-schooled students as well.
The article goes on to state the following:
Rep. Jason Smith, R-Mo., who introduced the Student Empowerment Act with Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, slammed Democrats for sabotaging his attempt to alleviate the cost of “children’s unique education needs,” no matter how they were schooled, as well as “educational therapies for students with disabilities” and “standardized testing fees.”
Smith gave the following comment to the Washington Examiner: “When something passes out of committee unanimously, you expect to vote on it on the floor of the House of Representatives, not have it stripped out behind closed doors. Backroom deals like this undermine the bipartisan work we do on the Ways and Means Committee and are exactly what people hate about Washington. I can’t wrap my head around why the Democrat party, who claims to be the party of education, would object to helping families afford everyday education expenses. But the swamp does funny things to people.”
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