Christie joins Johnson and McFadden at school event; says Johnson can beat Dayton

MinnPost photo by Brian Halliday
Gov. Chris Christie, right, speaking to the press following a classroom tour with GOP gubernatorial candidate Jeff Johnson, left.

“What’s your name?”

“What are you working on?”

“That’s well done.” 

The politicians crouched on the floor, asking questions of the first- and third-graders and making the most of the photogenic surroundings at Global Academy charter school in Columbia Heights. 

Republican candidate for governor Jeff Johnson, accompanied by Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey, moved the education achievement gap to the front burner of his campaign today with an appearance at a school where students score higher than the state average on achievement tests.

“Minnesota has one of the worst, if not the worst, achievement gaps … in the country,” Johnson said after he, Christie, and Republican candidate for U.S. Senate Mike McFadden toured three classrooms. “It’s embarrassing, it’s immoral. I think it’s unconscionable that we seem to be willing to almost give up on some of the kids in our state.”

The DFL responded to the event even before it was held. “As governor, Christie slashed a billion dollars in direct state aid to schools, gutting key investments in New Jersey’s future,” the DFL said in a statement. “As a legislator, Johnson voted for deep cuts in education funding.”

Johnson has disputed the charge of votes to cut education funding and today stressed that parents should have more control of education funding.

“For as much as possible we should let the money follow the child,” Johnson said.  “It gives parents more control … more choices, it gives them more options.” 

Christie, a likely candidate for president and chair of the Republican Governors Association, was asked how the RGA would demonstrate its support for Johnson.   

“I’m here because I think Jeff can win this race,” Christie said. “That should be an important sign of the RGA’s perspective of our commitment here. I’m going to 18 different states in the month of October. I’m not going to any place where I think our candidate can’t win.”  

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Comments (10)

  1. Submitted by Logan Foreman on 10/14/2014 - 08:41 am.

    So good to hear

    From the NJ hack. Don’t go over the 35W bridge. It all ready has problems because of the banker lobbyist/past governor.

  2. Submitted by Thomas Swift on 10/13/2014 - 05:12 pm.

    Interesting that Dayton’s response to Minnesota’s shameful failure to deliver educational success to minority kids is to whine about budget cuts. Because as we all know, it’s impossible to say just how much is enough to see an improvement, just “more”

    • Submitted by Greg Kapphahn on 10/13/2014 - 08:25 pm.

      Funny, I’m not Worried in the Least About Giving

      inner city schools and some rural schools enough money to help them deal with the disadvantaged and unstable circumstances their students grow up in.

      I’m wondering if, when it comes to actually being able to competently and honestly manage big business and big banking concerns, if there’s some magical multiple of the pay received by average workers that will make a difference.

      Will our nations’ managers and boards of directors finally be competent, capable, honest and innovative when they make 600 times average workers?

      800 times average workers?

      1000 times average workers?

      10,000 times average workers?


      Because it’s absolutely clear that they are NOT competent, capable honest, nor innovative enough to bring this nation’s economy back to life now,…

      (although Wall Street certainly seems to have been truly excellent at inflating the latest stock bubble, which may be deflating now, even as I type).

      Maybe if we gave the schools a great deal MORE and the executive class far less, we could actually accomplish something worthwhile in this state and nation.

      Lacking that, it’s only a matter of time before the economy of this nation collapses under the massive, monetary obesity of those at the top,…

      (who picture themselves a bit like the sculpture in the atrium at the Ministry of Magic after Voldemort’s people took over – with the wizards on the top and the “muggles” being crushed beneath them – those muggles being “in their proper place”).

    • Submitted by Neal Rovick on 10/14/2014 - 08:43 am.

      Let’s see if we have the numbers:

      College graduates earn about $ 1.4 million more in their life than a high-school drop-out.

      Drop-outs cost about $ 0.3 million in government assistance over their life-time.

      So a net swing of $ 1.7 million dollars for a graduate vs. drop-out.

      Class size of 30 kids–$ 51.0 million dollars, divided by 12 years, $ 4.25 million dollars in the balance for the economy per teacher per year.

      How much is it worth to grow the US economy by $ 4.25 million dollars by what one teacher can do in a school year?

    • Submitted by Neal Rovick on 10/14/2014 - 08:44 am.

      By the way, the numbers are from:

  3. Submitted by jason myron on 10/13/2014 - 07:49 pm.


    Failure is when you live in a state that is ranked 42nd in the country in quality of education K-12 and attempt to criticize a state that’s ranked 8th.

    • Submitted by Matt Haas on 10/13/2014 - 09:38 pm.

      But but..

      Wait, I thought single party conservative rule leads to fountains of gold coins, utterly perfect, obedient, academically striving children, zero poverty, and choirs of angels on every corner? You mean I was lied to? The horror.

  4. Submitted by Todd Hintz on 10/13/2014 - 09:22 pm.


    Johnson said “For as much as possible we should let the money follow the child. It gives parents more control … more choices, it gives them more options.”

    I wonder if he would also be in favor of light rail as it gives people more options. Or Obamacare as it also gives people more options. Or is he only in favor of options when it involves school funding?

    • Submitted by Logan Foreman on 10/14/2014 - 09:53 am.

      The MN constitution provides only

      For public schools, not religious or private schools. The money from govt can not follow the child to religious or private schools. And if parents want more control, they can send their kid to private school.

  5. Submitted by E Gamauf on 10/15/2014 - 07:02 am.

    Bo Christie Knows – Minnesota?

    A charter school.
    3rd graders don’t vote.

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