10 Reasons Michelle Rhee should never be considered for Trump's cabinet
On Wednesday, Donald Trump's communications adviser, Jason Miller, cited former D.C. school chancellor Michelle Rhee as someone who has been "mentioned" as a possible candidate to head up the president-elect's Department of Education.
In 2008, Rhee won over Tea Party conservatives and Republicans with her tough stance on vouchers, charters, school choice, the unearned trophy meme, and a willingness to fight teacher unions.
The epic public relations blitz that preceded and followed her arrival in D.C. in 2007 included an interview with Oprah, a Time magazine cover, and a feature documentary touting her as the new education messiah. Obama praised Rhee months before his win in 2008.
Too bad the hype didn't match the reality.
In case President-Elect Trump is truly mulling over Rhee for DoE secretary, here are some reasons to pass this one up:
1) Rhee hired Maoist and former Obama communications director Anita Dunn to handle the various controversies she faced at the end of her tenure in D.C. and beyond. What true conservative would hire Dunn?
2) She is married to Sacramento's Mayor Kevin Johnson. Johnson is a close friend of the Obamas and was investigated by AmeriCorps inspector general Gerald Walpin in 2008 for misuse of millions of dollars in AmeriCorps funds for his charter school.
During the investigation, school personnel and alleged teenage female victims of Johnson's sexual abuse came forward with detailed accounts of encounters with the founder of the St. HOPE Academy. Chancellor Rhee, soon to be engaged to Johnson at the time, flew from D.C. to Sacramento to head off a scandal that could have tarnished her image as well. Walpin ended up getting fired by the Obama White House.
3) With the help of Obama's secretary of education, Arne Duncan, Rhee was never held accountable for the D.C. cheating scandal, unlike Atlanta's disgraced former school superintendent, Beverly Hall, who faced 45 years in prison. Hall died of cancer before sentencing.
Hall's high-stakes testing strategy led to a massive cheating scandal that took over ten years to uncover. D.C.'s former chancellor, Michelle Rhee, employed the same testing tactics during her tenure from 2007 to 2010 and had her own widespread cheating scandal exposed by USA Today in 2011, with 103 schools flagged. Never prosecuted.
4) She lied on her résumé. An education blogger tried to track down evidence that she dramatically improved her grade school students' test scores during her three-year stint as a Baltimore Teach for America elementary employee. Here's what he concluded:
Rhee's résumé asserts that the students made a dramatic gain: 'Over a two-year period, moved students scoring on average at the 13th percentile on national standardized tests to 90 percent of students scoring at the 90th percentile or higher.' ... There is no real evidence – none at all – that Rhee's miracle ever occurred.
4) Not only did the StudentsFirst CEO support Common Core, but two of its lead writers were on the board of Rhee's billion-dollar organization. On IRS 501(c)(3) and 501(c)(4) applications for StudentsFirst Institute and StudentsFirst, respectively, David Coleman, regarded as the architect of Common Core, is listed as treasurer and Jason Zimba as director. Zimba, a math professor from Bennington College, authored the wacky and Kafkaesque CCSS Math standards.
5) The New Teacher Project, founded by Rhee in 1997, received funding from George Soros's Open Society Institute; the far-left Joyce Foundation; and the Chicago Public Education Fund, an offshoot of Barack Obama's and Bill Ayers's Annenberg Challenge. The non-profit's goal? To replace the old-guard "bad teachers" (which was the rallying cry to dupe the right, like "bad cops") with liberal social justice warriors in elementary and high schools.
6) In March 2013, Michelle Rhee, living in Sacramento, hired Fabian Nunez, a protégé of Marxist California labor union activists Miguel Contreras and his wife Maria Durazo, as an adviser for her Sacramento-based StudentsFirst.
In the 1990s, Nunez was political director of a labor federation under the support of Contreras. Contreras once stated, "Amnesty is a means to an end – the elimination of poverty and a better redistribution of wealth."
In 1995, Nunez was a labor activist stirring up the masses at rallies with Marxist speeches. "We don't have economic power because we don't own the means of production." Nunez went on to lobby for the Los Angeles Unified School District in 2000 and eventually served for six years in the California State Assembly.
Shortly after he began working at StudentsFirst, Nunez said, "[H]igh profile Democrats including President Obama and former Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa are pushing the Party to adopt much of Rhee's agenda," according to the L.A. Times.
Why would a so-called conservative in school matters employ a Marxist, and why were Obama and Duncan and Villaraigosa interested in promoting Rhee?
7) Rhee's name appeared on a program for a panel discussion in 2004 in Chicago. Who else was on the panel? The president of the far-left Joyce Foundation and John Ayers, brother of domestic terrorist Bill Ayers.
8) Jenny Abramson, a 30-year-old advertising executive at the Washington Post and friend of fellow Stanford grad Chelsea Clinton, led Rhee's tight-knit group of "education specialists" while Rhee worked as chancellor. A spokesperson for Rhee's office noted that they were in daily contact with the Washington Post during Rhee's tenure.
9) At the Democratic National Convention in 2012, Rhee revealed her position on centralized control of education policy. When asked about the Republican Party's education platform "pushing control back down to the local level," Rhee replied:
We had 14,000 school boards in this country making the decisions for a long time and that is why we ended up where we ended up[.] I don't think local folks know everything.
Also, during the convention, reporters asked Rhee whether the federal government should play a role in education. She said it must have a role, and its job is to set the standards and hold the states accountable to those standards. This amounts to a central authority calling the shots.
10) Rhee has the backing of globalist billionaires Bill Gates and Eli Broad. Andy Stern, former head of the SEIU and one of Obama's frequent visitors to the White House in his first term, along with Michelle Rhee, is a member of Broad's Board of Directors.
Finally, here's what ACORN whistleblower and friend of the late Andrew Breitbart Anita Moncrief said about operatives like Rhee.
They (those with socialist intentions) decided the best way to win was to assimilate into American society[.] ... [T]hey went into the non-profits, they went into academia and in some cases they even went into the Republican Party so they could claim bipartisanship which is how a lot of these groups get funded when Republicans have power.
No way Rhee should be anywhere near the top post at the Department of Education.