Posted Tuesday, June 12, 2012, at 9:41 AM
Mitt Romney is now backtracking from his previously stated view that America needs fewer cops, teachers, and firemen and now claims it's "completely absurd" to say that he wants this on the grounds that these are local government services.
Perhaps. But since Romney went through the trouble of releasing a white paper on federal education policy he's presumably aware that federal dollars partially finance local schools. And under the budget framework that Mitt Romney shares with Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis., those federal dollars are going to become very scarce. So either the relative wages of teachers compared with other college educated workers are going to need to tumble (which seems unlikely and ill-advised), or Romney budgeting will lead to fewer teachers. This is pretty elementary. He wouldn't be literally forcing towns to reduce the size of their teaching staffs, but the policy makes no sense unless you think cutting back on the number of teachers is fine for the country.