JCPS Teachers, You’ve Been Hoodwinked!

Recent events surrounding the passing of HB563, the Trojan Horse voucher bill, reminded me of March 28, 2019, when Jefferson County Teachers Association (JCTA), distracted and misled protesters and their own members as Senator Julie Raque Adams, whom they endorsed, cast the deciding vote against public education that year. A fresh look at the chain of events that took place that day, when Raque Adams cast the single YES vote that would confirm voucher vulture Gary Houchens to a seat on the Kentucky Board of Education, will leave your head spinning. Houchens is a director with EdChoice, and has been tied to the cabal of individuals who have been positioning themselves to benefit from voucher legislation. EdChoice was visibly involved in lobbying for the passage of the legislation this year, as well.

Prior to the vote on Senate Resolution 240, Senators Wilson and Higdon can be seen outside the Senate Gallery doors having a conversation as Senator Schickel is speaking against the previous bill, HB11. The video below shows them moving about in front of the door.

Senate Resolution 240 is called for a vote. Senators are asked if anyone would like to speak on the bill. McGarvey rises.

Senators are asked if anyone would like to speak on the bill. McGarvey rises.

Shown clockwise from bottom left, Senators Jimmy Higdon, Julie Raque Adams, Jared Carpenter, Morgan McGarvey and Robin Webb will play a role in the events that follow.

During McGarvey’s speech, Higdon walks behind him in the back of the Chamber. The roll call begins, yet when Senator Higdon’s name is called, no response is heard and his name remains white.

As soon as McGarvey starts speaking against the resolution, Senator Raque Adams gets up and moves toward the back of the Senate Gallery.

Thirty seconds after Higdon walks by, Raque Adams gets up and heads toward the back of the Chamber. She sits in Senator Schickel’s seat in order to talk with her suite-mate, Senator Jared Carpenter while the roll call continues.

Senator Raque Adams pulls up next to her Annex suite-mate, Senator Carpenter.

Senator Carpenter, who sponsored a recognition for Stephanie Winkler with KEA on the Senate Floor that same day, was also expected to vote NO. Appearing to recognize that her vote will be critical to the passage of SR240, Raque Adams can be seen on the phone during Meredith’s explanation of his NO vote.

Senator Raque Adams is on the phone as her turn to vote approaches.

This is an actual photograph I took that day from the Senate gallery.

Raque Adams name is still white after Senator Webb’s vote is cast.

As the roll call continues, Senator Raque Adams cannot be seen. Her name remains white on the board as they continue past her without recording a vote. The Senate Gallery is filled with people wearing red shirts representing teachers, retired teachers, and parents who are there to try to prevent harmful legislation from passing on the last day.

Some time during Senator Webb’s speech Raque Adams casts her vote. Despite the JCTA endorsement, the red shirts in the Gallery, and the protesters in the Capitol asking her to vote NO on SR240, Raque Adams signals her YEA vote and returns to her seat.

Senator Webb explains her NO vote against the resolution as Raque Adams casts a YEA vote and returns to her seat.
Final vote 19-17. Higdon and Wilson didn’t vote, despite being present. The resolution passes.

The remaining votes are recorded. No response from Wilson can be heard. His name, along with Higdon, remain white.

The final count is 19 YEAs, 17 NAYs. Houchens’ appointment is confirmed to serve on the Kentucky Board of Education for four more years. Raque Adams had the power to cast a NO vote and put a stop once and for all to the grift

Instead, with help from JCTA, she was enabled to vote against public education that day without repercussions. JCTA continues to forgive the anti-public education voting record of Senator Raque Adams and House Representative Jason Nemes while they collaborate with them behind the scenes to craft and pass legislation that goes against the demands of the rank-and-file teachers and is specifically harmful to JCPS most vulnerable minority populations in particular.

The resolution passes and the camera returns to show Higdon and Wilson back in their seats, despite not having voted.

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