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Romney should go on the attack

Writing before the Democratic convention, Mary Anna Towler says that the Democrats are not as "fired up" as they were four years ago, and she obviously doesn't like Obama's chances ("Romney's Powerful Pitch," Urban Journal). I'm a conservative, but I disagree.

Romney's campaign consists of one issue: jobs. But if the unemployment rate drops (as I write, it has dropped from 8.3 percent to 8.1 percent), the Dems will trumpet it to the high heavens, and Romney will have no issue to run on.

Romney's game plan simply isn't working. Three weeks ago, Obama's lead was 3 percent. It seems every other day since then, someone on a newscast says, "The gap is closing." Yet after three weeks of this closing, guess what? Obama leads by 3 percent. Remember when Dems ran on the "culture of corruption"? They won then, because they attacked Republicans every chance they got. Republicans should've responded in kind.

The two parties may bicker over tax cuts versus tax increases and budget cuts versus budget increases. But everyone hates corruption. No administration has been more corrupt than Obama's. No Republican has criticized Obama's phony recess appointments when there was no recess. No one criticizes Obama on his unconstitutional takeover of auto companies, financial institutions, and banks.

Obama refused to enforce the Defense of Marriage Act because it's unconstitutional, but it was signed into law by President Clinton.

No Republican talks about these misdeeds. When a party leaves you all this ammo, empty all chambers.

But what did you expect? Romney picked some McCain retreads as his advisers. They ran McCain's campaign into the ground and are doing the same for Romney.

I predict an Obama landslide that will have enough coattails to enable Dems to win the House and retain the Senate. And Republicans will continue to allow Dems to get away with this.


Resolution on testing deserves praise

Rochester School Board Commissioner Mary Adams has submitted a resolution to the Rochester Board of Education that focuses on the negative impact of high-stakes, standardized testing on students, teachers and schools. This resolution is supported by volumes of research documenting the severe damage this type of testing does to student learning and effective teaching.

Although one member of the Cuomo Education Reform Commission has characterized the resolution as a mere political stunt, there are no politics involved. If anything, this resolution is concerned with a testing policy that is choking the life from the joy of student learning and teacher creativity. Its passage would be gigantic step in the right direction for significant and meaningful educational reform.

The resolution, in fact, could be used to lobby the New York State Board of Regents and the US Department of Education to allow more school districts the flexibility to use alternative forms of assessment for determining student growth and development, as well as teacher effectiveness.

Rochester's and New York State's damaging obsession with high-stakes, standardized testing is deeply in-grained and will not change without strong opposition from those directly involved with implementing state and federal education policies.

For this courageous proposal, the Coalition for Justice in Education commends Commissioner Adams for her tireless work in research-based, educational reform, and asks that others who support this resolution convey their beliefs to all members of the Rochester Board of Education.

The letter is signed by 22 other members of the COJE steering committee.