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Letter to House members of the Republican Main Street Partnership

May 30, 2007

Dear Representative:

On behalf of the National Education Association's (NEA) 3.2 million members, we would like to express our concern regarding a dear colleague letter being circulated in the House encouraging President Bush to veto FY 08 appropriations bills that contribute to spending levels above those requested in his proposed budget. We believe this letter is premature and disregards the very real need for increased funding on key domestic priorities. We urge you to refrain from signing this letter.

This year, Congress took the first essential steps toward restoring recent education cuts and providing the resources necessary to fulfill every child's right to a great public school. Unfortunately, too many of our students still are not receiving the tools and help they need to succeed. Additional investments in proven programs such as Title I and IDEA special education as well as higher education programs such as Pell Grants are essential if we are to close achievement gaps and maximize the academic potential of every student. Similarly, other domestic priorities such as health care face funding shortages that must be addressed to ensure the future strength and well-being of our nation.

We believe that drawing a line in the sand by encouraging a veto of as-yet unwritten appropriations bills is unnecessary. In addition, we believe it ignores the flexibility Congress will need to craft appropriations bills that fully support our nation's schools, families, and communities. 

Again, we urge you to refrain from signing this unnecessary letter.


Diane Shust, Director of Government Relations

Randall Moody, Manager of Federal Advocacy