On Tuesday, Arizona Republican gubernatorial candidate Kari Lake revealed that her Democrat counterpart Katie Hobbs fought to eliminate the Pledge of Allegiance, national anthem, and Constitution from being taught in elementary schools across the state.
Lake slammed Hobbs for her voting record, and warned Arizonans of the consequences a Hobbs government would have for their children. The bills Lake referenced include SB1289, SB1152 and SB1020.
"In Hobbs’ Arizona, your kindergartner wouldn’t learn the Pledge of Allegiance," Lake began, "but your precious five-year-old would be taught about sex."
Arizona's SB 1289 was one which Hobbs voted against during her time as state senator, AZ Central reports. In voting against the bill, Hobbs voted against the addition in schools of "the Arizona state motto, 'Ditat Deus,' which means God enriches," and the addition of "In God We Trust," not removal of the Pledge itself. The bill passed despite her opposition.
As Politifact reported, "The bill amended an existing law that listed the Constitution and other core American documents; her vote did not affect the original bill that allowed those texts in classrooms. "
In the 2016 legislative session, Hobbs sponsored a bill that would have required parents to opt their children out of sex ed in the lower grades, rather than as the law currently stands, for parents to opt children in. AZ Central reports that "Arizona is one of just five states that require parents to 'opt-in' to sex education classes, rather than having an opt-out system. State law bans sex education before fifth grade, and schools are not required to offer the courses at all. Students younger than fifth grade can only be offered instruction on HIV and sexual abuse prevention."
Lake described the Pledge, the anthem, the Constitution, and the Declaration of Independence as "American cornerstones" and "pillars of our great nation," saying she was shocked that Hobbs fought to keep them out of the classroom, though the bill she referenced does not show that she did.
"Growing up in America it was an absolute no-brainer for you and me to learn these things in school; Hobbs does not want that same education for our children."
She noted that at the same time, however, Hobbs sponsored legislation to introduce sex education to kindergarteners.
“What world is she living in?” Lake said of Hobbs, accusing her and other “radical politicians” of destroying the America that many grew up with and cherish.
“As a mother and as your governor,” she said, “I pledge to you that Arizona’s education system will teach our children that America, the land of the free and the home of the brave,” adding that it will be up to parents to give their kids “the talk.”
The bills Lake referenced include SB1289, which added the provision that educators could, in addition to the national anthem and pledge of allegience, post the US national motto as well as the state motto. SB1020, from 2016, concerned parental rights in education, and it sought to amend existing Arizona law which required parents to opt-in to sex ed classes for their children to say that parents must actively opt-out. SB1152 concerns the funding of home school education and the ability of schools to acquire US flags and copies of the constitution rather than ot purchase them.
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