Several months ago Jeb Bush publicly praised President Obama for selecting Arne Duncan as education secretary. “I think Arne Duncan has done a good job,” the former Florida governor said in this CBS interview. Perhaps to return the favor, Duncan is now scheduled to deliver a keynote address at Bush’s fifth annual Excellence in Action Summit later this month in Washington.
There’s no real surprise in the Jeb and Arne show. Duncan has spoken at earlier Bush summits. Obama himself stood on a stage with Bush — the architect of Florida’s damaging corporate-style education reforms, which have become a model around the country — and called him “a champion of education reform.” This while Wisconsin teachers were protesting for their collective bargaining rights last year. And I wrote a few days ago that Bush’s summit had also booked as a keynote speaker John Podesta, founder and chairman of the Center for American Progress, who was president Bill Clinton’s chief of staff and and co-chair of Obama’s 2008 presidential transition team.