Search for...
Follow @ontheissuesorg
OnTheIssuesLogo

Donald Rumsfeld on Education

Secretary of Defense (Pres. Bush Cabinet)


1969: Experiment with school vouchers

Our plan was to have OEO (Office of Economic Opportunity) serve as a laboratory for experimental programs, not as an entity that managed large operations in perpetuity. For example, OEO had tried a number of innovative approaches to education. Under my predecessors, to their credit, OEO had launched an experiment providing school vouchers for parents. The plan had the support of my friend Milton Friedman. Friedman and I believed that school vouchers could lead to improvement in public education by giving parents choices rather than forcing them to send their children to a particular school. OEO also had supported an experiment in performance contracting for teachers, an idea that was bitterly opposed by the politically active teachers' unions.
Source: Known and Unknown, by Donald Rumsfeld, p.125 , Feb 8, 2011

1970: First suggestion of tuition tax credit (school choice)

[In 1969-1970, as head of the Office of Economic Development] Rumsfeld sponsored one notable new initiative that eventually became a cherished cause of American conservatives, tuition tax credits. It was the first salvo in an educational controversy that has persisted for decades. Rumsfeld argued that with tax credits or vouchers, "poor parents would be able to exercise some opportunity to choose, similar to that now enjoyed by wealthier parents, who can move to a 'better' public school district or send their children to private schools."

In a memo to Nixon about the tax credit idea, Rumsfeld said he thought he could convince Jewish groups that their fears about a violation of the principle of separation of church and state were "groundless." However, Rumsfeld went on, "The education lobby is clearly correct in perceiving the potential threat that these experiments pose to their comfortable world." That memo encapsulated Rumsfeld's eagerness to upset the existing order.

Source: Rise of the Vulcans, by James Mann, p. 13-14 , Sep 7, 2004

  • Click here for definitions & background information on Education.
  • Click here for VoteMatch responses by Donald Rumsfeld.
  • Click here for AmericansElect.org quiz by Donald Rumsfeld.
Other candidates on Education: Donald Rumsfeld on other issues:
Former Presidents:
George W. Bush (R,2001-2009)
Bill Clinton (D,1993-2001)
George Bush Sr. (R,1989-1993)
Ronald Reagan (R,1981-1989)
Jimmy Carter (D,1977-1981)
Gerald Ford (R,1974-1977)
Richard Nixon (R,1969-1974)
Lyndon Johnson (D,1963-1969)
John F. Kennedy (D,1961-1963)

Former Contenders:
V.P.Al Gore
Pat Buchanan
V.P.Dick Cheney
Sen.Bob Dole
Ralph Nader
Gov.Sarah Palin

Political Thinkers:
Noam Chomsky
Milton Friedman
Arianna Huffington
Rush Limbaugh
Tea Party
Ayn Rand
Secy.Robert Reich
Donald Trump
Gov.Jesse Ventura
Abortion
Budget/Economy
Civil Rights
Corporations
Crime
Drugs
Education
Energy/Oil
Environment
Families/Children
Foreign Policy
Free Trade
Govt. Reform
Gun Control
Health Care
Homeland Security
Immigration
Infrastructure/Technology
Jobs
Principles/Values
Social Security
Tax Reform
War/Iraq/Mideast
Welfare/Poverty

Page last updated: Mar 13, 2014