By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter
Alabama Governor Robert Bentley (R) spoke at the Alabama Republican Party’s Pumpkin Patch rally in Clanton on Saturday. Bentley told the crowd that every parent in the State has the right to opt their child out of standardized testing that is part of the controversial Common Core testing that is currently being implemented across Alabama.
The conservative governor told the gathered candidates and voters that it is important to have fun each day and that principle is part of each staff meeting, but “It is easy to have fun when you are serving such wonderful people as in the state of Alabama. We have the best people in the world.”
Gov. Bentley said, “It has been a privilege to serve as your Governor over the last four years. When I came in to office Alabama was broke. We had one of two choices: raising taxes or making government more efficient. Some people wanted to raise cigarette taxes. I told them that’s because you don’t smoke. If you don’t have a lot of timber you want timber taxes raised. People are always eager to raise taxes on things they don’t do.”
Bentley said he fought them and instead insisted that the State do simple common sense things to save money like refinancing our bonds, he cut the size of government.
Bentley said, we have great State employees and they do a fantastic job, but he kept a hiring freeze in place. “As people retired or left we didn’t replace them and have reduced State employees by 5500 and changed how we fund retirement system. We have saved $1.1 billion annually for the people of the State.”
Bentley said we have been recruiting jobs to locations all over the state. “I am very proud of Remington bringing jobs from New York to Alabama.” Remington is the oldest firearms manufacturer in the country and they decided they want to go to a state that valued the second amendment. Bentley said that thus far his administration has recruited 55,000 new jobs to the state of Alabama not counting the small businesses that are expanding.
Despite Washington the economy is growing. Washington is a mess. Bentley said that if we educate the people in this state you don’t need welfare. “I do know that there are people you need to take care of but every able bodied person should be working.”
Bentley said that he supports education but Common Core is not necessarily the way to do it. Parents do have the right to decide if their child participates in the required testing that is part of Common Core. Bentley said that he talked with State Education Superintendent Tommy Bice on the phone after talking with his legal counsel and there is nothing in the law that says a parent can’t opt their child out of that testing and I have instructed Tommy Bice on that.
Parents have the right to not to tell the schools that their child will not take the testing, “And there will be no repercussions.”
Bentley said that education is best when handled on a local level.
Bentley said that we have got to get people enthused about June the 3rd. We have got to get people out to vote. Bentley said that he cut two ads on Wednesday which will be running strongly across the state to get a good turnout.
Governor Bentley said, “The Democrats are in big trouble.”
We have a lot of good candidates running in the June election and we want to beat the number of people voting in the Republican Party primary that we had last time.