News From Terre Haute, Indiana

Local & Bistate

November 8, 2012

Pence promises to go forward with education overhaul, tax cut pledge

INDIANAPOLIS — Indiana Gov.-elect Mike Pence said he’ll make job creation “job one” when he takes office in January and promised to abide by his campaign’s “Roadmap for Indiana” plan, which includes support for education reforms that voters seemed to reject and a tax cut that legislative leaders oppose.

At a Wednesday morning news conference with current Gov. Mitch Daniels, the Republican congressman also said he’ll return to Washington, D.C., for the lame duck session of Congress after he appoints some key members of his gubernatorial transition team.

Pence opened his remarks to the press by echoing comments he made during his late-night victory speech Tuesday, acknowledging his win over Democrat John Gregg was due in part to the popularity of the Republican Daniels.

“I believe last night’s election was as much a vote of confidence in this administration as it was an affirmation of the vision and plans that we articulated in our candidacy for governor,” Pence said.

Pence pledged to keep up what he said was Daniels’ focus on “excellence, reform, and results.”

That quickly lead into questions from reporters who pressed Pence for his opinion about Tuesday’s surprising defeat of Republican Tony Bennett, the high-profile superintendent of public instruction who spearheaded the massive education overhaul that Daniels had championed and the Republican-controlled legislature approved.

Pence dodged some of the more pointed questions about Bennett, saying he’d leave it to the press to speculate about the reasons for Bennett’s loss.

But he also rejected the notion that Bennett’s ouster at the hands of Democrat Glenda Ritz was a sign that voters rejected the sweeping changes in education, which include vouchers for private schools, merit pay for teachers, and more high-stakes testing for students.

Pence said the more important signal was the super-majority that Republicans won in the Indiana House, taking 69 of the 100 seats.

“We have strong affirmation on the progress of education reform in this state,” Pence said.

Ritz beat Bennett with 52 percent of the vote and winning more votes statewide than Pence won in his election. Ritz ran a distinctly anti-Bennett campaign, and promised she’d do whatever she could to roll back some of the new education policies that the legislature has put into law.

Pence said he’d work with Ritz to find “common ground” but also said he favors the path that Republicans have taken on education, which includes more charter schools and creating the nation’s largest private school voucher program.

Pence and Daniels also reminded reporters that Ritz will have to answer to the State Board of Education, whose members are appointed by the governor. Daniels described the current board as “rock solid” on the education reforms that have been passed.

Daniels also raised the notion that the Republican-controlled legislature may take a look at changing state law to make the superintendent of public instruction position an appointed one rather than an elected one. It’s an idea floated by both Democrats and Republicans in the past, who’ve argued that the state’s education policy should reflect the intent of the governor. Pence said he has “no opinion” on whether the issue should be pushed in the next legislative session.

He did, however, make clear that he intends to keep his campaign pledge to cut Indiana’s personal income tax rate by 10 percent, to make it the lowest rate in the Midwest.

That’s a pledge that Republican legislative leaders have looked upon with skepticism. In October, GOP House Speaker Brian Bosma predicted legislators will be wary of reducing state revenue, after already passing legislation to phase out the state’s inheritance tax and cut the corporate tax rate.

“Any tax cut in addition to those has to be sustainable,” Bosma said at the time. “Our team definitely has a long-term vision, not a campaign-oriented vision, for how we budget.”

Maureen Hayden is the Indiana Statehouse bureau chief for CNHI, the parent company of the Tribune-Star. She can be reached at maureen.

`hayden@indianamediagroup.com.

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
Local & Bistate
Latest News
TribStar.com Poll
AP Video
Passengers Abuzz After Plane Hits Swarm of Bees Hundreds Missing After South Korean Ferry Sinks Boston Bomb Scare Defendant Appears in Court Disbanding Muslim Surveillance Draws Praise Raw: Ferry Sinks Off South Korean Coast Raw: Urinator Causes Portland to Flush Reservoir Pistorius Trial: Adjourned Until May 5 Diaz Gets Physical for New Comedy Raw: Fatal Ferry Boat Accident Raw: Pro-Russian Militants Killed on Base Miley Cyrus Still in Hospital, Cancels 2nd Show New York Auto Show Highlights Latest in Car Tech Pope's Relic on Wheels Departs to Rome Freeze Leaves Florida Panhandle With Dead Trees Raw: Three Rare White Tiger Cubs Debut at Zoo Captain of Sunken South Korean Ferry Apologizes Today in History for April 17th Hoax Bomb Raises Anxiety in Boston New York Auto Show Highlights Latest in Car Tech Town, Victims Remember Texas Blast
NDN Video
Grizzly Bears Get Snowy Birthday Party Florida State Ends Top Of the 5th With Bizarre Play vs Jacksonville | ACC Must See Moment Kate Upton Loves Her Body, Every Part Of It Weatherman draws forecast when another technical glitch strikes WGN Elizabeth Olsen's Sexy Shoot Bay Area Teen Gets Prom Date With Help From 'Breaking Bad' Star Boston Bomb Scare Defendant Appears in Court Behind The Tanlines Jersey Strong Part 1 WATCH: Women Fight To Marry Prince Harry! Jenny McCarthy Engaged to "New Kid" Kate and Will Land in Oz O’Reilly Launches Preemptive Strike Against CBS Pixar Unveils Easter Eggs From its Biggest Movies Baby Sloths Squeak for Their Cuddle Partners in Adorable Video Miley Cyrus Hospitalized After Severe Reaction To Medicine Raw: Ferry Sinks Off South Korean Coast Toddler climbs into vending machine 8-year-old Boy Gets His Wish: Fly Like Iron Man Much-Anticipated 'Gone Girl' Trailer Finally Debuts! (VIDEO) Dog and Toddler Wear Matching Outfits in Adorable Photo Series
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
  • -

     

    March 12, 2010

activity