Reaching Out to the Left

The Rio Grande Foundation is proud of its conservative credentials and suffer the slings and arrows of those who sometimes call us a “front group” for Republicans. But, we are about good policy, not party politics. That is why we recently had some kind words for Rep. Mimi Stewart (a liberal Democrat) to the consternation of some prominent Republicans (read the comments at the previous link).

Well, last night after our Las Cruces Liberty on the Rocks, I went directly into the “belly of the beast” when I visited the “progressive voter alliance” in Las Cruces. I was there thanks to Sen. Steve Fischmann who, while we disagree on a variety of issues, agrees with and supports much of the “Florida Model” for K-12 reforms and Gov. Martinez’s educational efforts.

I had four minutes to present, and was given a fair hearing for my views. If anything, the main concern that the 50 or so folks at the meeting had was the need to address underlying poverty issues that go far deeper than any “education” reform can. And, while I know that we at RGF and the PVA folks probably disagree 90+ percent of the time, I think education is one big issue that there may be some common ground on. Hopefully build and then leverage that support to get more robust education reforms the next time the Legislature meets.