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Op-Ed: Vandersloot’s Opposition to Little’s Launch Scholarship Bill

By • February 20, 2023

In the past I have been critical of Frank VanderSloot for his past support of leftist causes/organizations/candidates. But today, I want to express my sincere gratitude to Frank for opposing House Bill 24, the bill that would create Gov. Brad Little’s “Idaho Launch” scholarship of $8,500 for every high school graduate.

In his letter to state senators who will now consider the bill (having passed the House 36-34), Frank wrote that the bill is “rightly labeled a liberal bill” and worried that the measure would lead to a lot of government waste and cronyism.

“Whenever you give money away with no requirements, it has little chance of producing any desired result,” he wrote.

He noted that “special interests will have total control of what industries receive the $100 million” expected to be spent under the legislation. An unelected, unaccountable board (the Workforce Development Council) would decide where the money goes and to which professions, Frank noted.

Since the vote in the House of Representatives, questions have lingered over comments from a lead sponsor of the legislation that the bill will help a company – a huge donor of Gov. Little’s – hire welders, creating a pay-to-play cloud over the proposal, intentionally or unintentionally.

Much of Frank’s letter mirrors the Republican Platform and supports the cautions spelled out by conservatives in the House of Representatives who warned the program will get unbearably expensive quickly and is predicated on the ideas of a centralized, socialized economy. Of the 59 House Republicans, 34 opposed the legislation with 25 liberal Republicans teaming up with the 11 Democrats to pass the bill in the House (36-34). So it’s important to note the majority of House Republicans do not support this legislation. Frank’s decision to take this position is no doubt not easy. The governor wants this bill to pass badly. He talked about it in his State of the State address in January. The Idaho Association of Commerce and Industry supports it; the group’s president spoke in favor of the bill when it was considered by the House Education Committee. Until Frank came out in opposition, only the Idaho Freedom Foundation was on record opposing the legislation.

I hope others will follow suit of Frank’s willingness to take on the governor over a key piece of his policy, it is very refreshing, because it’s the right thing to do. Let Frank know that you appreciate his bold stance in defense of Idaho taxpayers, our free-market economy, and the cause of liberty.

This Op-Ed was submitted by Doyle Beck. Op-Eds do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of those at the Idaho Dispatch.


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Tags: Brad Little, Frank Vandersloot, Governor Little, Idaho House of Representatives, Idaho Launch, Idaho Senate, Launch Program, Launch Scholarship

29 thoughts on “Op-Ed: Vandersloot’s Opposition to Little’s Launch Scholarship Bill

  1. HB 24 is a socialist dream. Our Idiot Governor must be interviewing for a job in California’s Political Arena once he’s impeached here.

    1. I, for one, sincerely hope that he saves the taxpayers’ dollars required to impeach him and just cleans out his desk…in a perfect world he’d take Bedke with him as he departs.

      1. We use the “selection” machines. Proven to be coded with the desired results. If we do not get rid of the machines and mail in ballots we cannot vote our way out of this.

    2. Impeachment has already been tried but the moronic iduhhhhoans didn’t vote yes. Have you been pay attention? Our politicians and government employees are a top to bottom crime gang that make the drug Cartels seem like a girl scout troop on their first camp our

  2. I would prefer that he gave 8500 to every property owner rather than the paltry amount refunded for grocery tax. Better yet, repeal taxes on groceries. Seems like there must be available funds in the coffers if he wants to dole out 8500 per high school graduate.

  3. Government was created for limited purposes. Giving a “leg up” to anyone for anything, including their post high school educational finances is OUTSIDE of that limitation. This Bill flies in the face of Americanism and the ideals of a Free Society! “If you do for one, you do for all,” which is something our governor says all the time! This bill is unConstitutional on its face by favoring those who graduate from high school, which, is in itself discriminatory.

    Additionally, once a student has graduated from government-sponsored education, it is their duty to pursue further instruction and to figure out how to pay for it. The government should NOT be involved. This sort of involvement is exactly what we see in communist countries. We are not yet a communist nation, nor do we wish to become one. Is someone in our Idaho government too tied to China and their way of doing things? Hmmmmm…

    Though this may seem “well-intentioned,” it can only lead to more problems. First, it will “grow government” which is a BIG negative. Also, it is unsustainable for Idaho. One cannot expect Federal Dollars every year to cover this cost, as the Governor did during covid by adopting Federal mandates. This will lead to MORE TAXES on the people.

    HB 24 will lead to NOTHING GOOD. It is not difficult to “connect-the-dots” on this Bill. What I mean is that there are most likely businesses looking for these dollars to come their way and who will decide what businesses get these dollars? The State? Let things play out naturally. Let FREEDOM reign in Idaho. “Government is BEST which governs least!”

    I too urge a NO VPTE for the “Launch Bill” — VOTE NO ON HB 24, and thank Frank Vandersloot for his refreshing stance on this Bill!!!

  4. HB 24 is nothing more than a campaign gimmick, and effectively launders public funds to cronies of those who would pass such a Bill. Gifting public funds to private individuals is morally wrong, and further erodes good governance. Perhaps that is Little’s plan? It certainly speaks volumns about his character.

  5. I’m agree with Frank on this one. I hardly ever agree with Beck on anything as his positions are generally nothing more than self serving. There is no accountability in the bill for funds spent and, as a result, the tuitions for programs covered will likely go up by $8,500 and the bill will accomplish nothing.

  6. Thank you Doyle Beck for you Op Ed and telling everyone about Franks letter. This should show the people of Idaho just how the liberals have taken over Little and his cronies and wake the people of Idaho up.

    1. There has been no take over, some people are just waking up to the politician, government employee and military crime gang that has redistributed our wealth to foreign nations and corrupt corporations and the parasites in society and stolen our freedoms and liberties and property through taxation . Pay attention,,, Russia, China, Iran or North Korea hasn’t done the destruction to this nation that our politicians government employees and the military have done.

  7. Idaho once again arguing with itself over the origin of a bill vs the merit of the bill. Conservatives are up in arms, screaming for school vouchers which is the same thing as this bill. The only difference is the vouchers benefit the wealthy whose kids are utilizing private schools now. The launch scholarship bill, like the original GI Bill after WW2 has the ability to “launch” a new generation into additional education and wage earnings. The GI Bills sent people to the moon. What can be so wrong about that? Why do we as state pride ourselves so much on keeping the poor poor while pouring money, rebates, tax ctus into the pockers of the wealthy? In Boise, Micron technology is going to thousands of skilled trained technology workers. If we can’t provide them, or show an effort and progression in producinnng them, they will import them from around the world. Education and training is about bringing people up out of poverty taking them off of Medcaid Expansion, increasing income tax revenues with higher wages, increasing sales tax revenues for all businesses with purchases. This is about Idaho’s future. Shall we lead in pulling people up? Or lead in pushing them down, keeping our thumbs on their growth. If this bill is liberal or socialist so are vouchers. You can’t support one and not the other. One puts taxpayer dollars into the wealthy pockets while the other helps pull people up. Support the LAUNCH BILL, let’s LAUNCH Idahoans into a better more prosperous future!

  8. The government is out of control. Rhino’s like Brad Little need to be stopped. The people have forgotten that the government works for them and they are letting the government dictate everything they do. THIS MUST STOP. Thank you Frank Vandersloot for standing up for the people and for fighting against the tyranny of oppressive government overreach.

    1. If you didn’t pay attention, the enlightened Idahoans reelected Brad last November. What does that tell you about the idaho voters? Maybe it is something to do with then government schools and their unioniozed teachers turning out Tv watching morons?

  9. Question: What if Little’s Launch didn’t come out of sales tax revenue, but instead was funded out of unemployment insurance tax – with the employers who pay in getting to set the priorities for skills, certificates and degrees supported. You and I, regular taxpayers, pay in nothing. Employers pay the bill, but they get people off couches and into workplaces (remember they’d be paying the unemployed through this tax anyway). And what if employers can choose whether to participate in this version of Launch voluntarily – and therefore would only do so if they see a hiring benefit. Would Frank still oppose that? Would you? Isn’t this similar to how guilds and paid apprenticeships have always worked outside of government?

    1. Trent, What a convoluted mess! Sorry, but unemployment insurance is for just that. Micron is laying off employees but would use their unemployment for scholarships?? They just go to D.C. and ask for more work visas. What if the college graduate doesn’t want to stay in Idaho?
      Sorry, this is just bending to IACI no matter how you frame it. Give it up!

    2. What if? Giving away unearned money is never a good thing , if you paid attention to something besides the Tv.

  10. Far better to give Idaho students a better education via school choice. (SB 1038)
    This will provide them with a better chance of a successful launch than “free” money.

  11. Thank you Mr. VanderSloot for standing up for Idaho taxpayers by pointing out the shortcomings of this socialist bill.

  12. Little’s cronies are the corporations who no longer want to pay for training/educating their employees. It’ll be up to the taxpayers to cover it.

  13. For those that don’t know Doyle, he has been a tireless advocate for freedom and has taken more heat that many ever will so as you read this and think of who Vandersloot was or still is, just know Doyle has been uncompromising in Idaho’s pursuit of that restoration of freedom. As I write this, I was even surprised because I had heard that Frank was seemingly changing his position on a few things and I thought, “this guy knows how to get what he wants, is he just taking the “patriot” position because he realizes he can capitalize on it while maintaining his connection to the RINO establishment?” I saw Vandersloot willing to take heated questions at a meeting in SE Idaho and although I wasn’t there, heard he stood tall when doing so. I was left dumbfounded on what was happening, but I also live in the Treasure Valley and not where Frank and Doyle live. So, for those like me that want to stay in the know, watch Mr. Beck because in my experience he knows what he is talking about. I would follow up with Doyle’s support in letting Frank know you support his position on this issue. let’s just watch him carefully on all others because that is how we hold people and governments accountable.

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