Harwell has shown substantial leadership in working with both her fellow Republicans and Democrats on major issues such as public education, including landmark legislation to bring charter schools to Davidson County.
Harwell said she has been “impressed” with the Obama administration’s action on education reform, adding that she doesn’t think she could’ve gotten the charter schools bill passed without some help from administration officials. She likes the idea of increased standards, but she believes more reform is necessary so that children are meeting — at the least — pre-reform standards. She said “we’ve run out of excuses” for poor test scores, and that it is time for significant changes, including more teacher accountability.
Harwell irked Republicans when she voted against allowing guns in bars and restaurants. She was also a co-sponsor of the Health Freedom Act, which criticizes the federal health care reform law. She said she did so because she believes the federal government is overstepping its bounds into states’ territory.
Matthew Kenigson is Harwell’s Democratic challenger. He is a bright, talented tech entrepreneur whose passion is in education reform. Kenigson has many substantial ideas. We urge him to start his political career on a lower level, perhaps as a candidate for school board.