California Democrats took aim at efforts to overhaul the state's education system and environmental review laws, issuing sharp words and resolutions on both topics during the final day of the state party's convention in Sacramento.
Much of the fiery rhetoric during Sunday's general session was focused on StudentsFirst, the education policy advocacy group founded by Michelle Rhee, and Democrats for Education Reform, which has backing from former Democratic state Sen. Gloria Romero.
"They sound like good names, but let's be perfectly clear. These organizations are backed by moneyed interests, Republican operatives and out-of-state Wall Street billionaires dedicated to school privatization and trampling on teacher and worker rights," California Teachers Association President Dean Vogel told delegates Sunday. "And we're not going to stand for that."
State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson criticized the same groups by name, saying they do not "lift a finger to prevent the cuts to education."
"In my book, you're not a reformer, you're not helping education and you're sure not much of a Democrat," he said.