House passes Rep. Kline's education overhaul billby Brett Neely, Minnesota Public Radio
WASHINGTON — The Republican-controlled U.S. House has passed a bill written by U.S. Rep. John Kline that would overhaul the nation's education laws.
The final vote for Kline's Student Success Act was 221 to 207, almost entirely along party lines. It would consolidate scores of programs and reduce the federal role in schools.
Minnesota's eight members stuck with their parties on the vote.
Kline, a Republican who represents Minnesota's 2nd District, cast the bill as an effort to free schools from some of the requirements of the unpopular 2001 No Child Left Behind Law.
"Flexibility, Mr. Chairman, I might say, has been begged for, demanded, year after year since this law passed," Kline said.
U.S. Rep. Tim Walz, a Democrat who represents Minnesota's 1st District, voted no. He said said Democrats viewed the bill as too conservative to support.
"I think a lot of folks see it as an attempt to voucherize and to weaken public education," Walz said.
Kline's bill is unlikely to become law. President Barack Obama vowed to veto it and the Senate Democrats are still trying to pass their own update to education laws.