Huffpost Politics

Bobby Jindal: Bill De Blasio A 'Petulant Tyrant Holding Low-Income Kids Hostage'

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BOBBY JINDAL
Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal speaks to reporters of the political common ground that he and Mississippi Gov. Phil Bryant share, Wednesday, April 3, 2013. In March 2014, Jindal wrote a New York Post op-ed blasting New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio. (AP Photo/Rogelio V. Solis) | ASSOCIATED PRESS

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio does not have a friend in Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal.

On Tuesday, the New York Post published an op-ed by Jindal in which he criticized the mayor’s hostility to charter schools, saying that de Blasio’s actions have the “markings of a petulant tyrant holding low-income students hostage.” He also accused de Blasio of “[embarking] on a systematic campaign to destroy the city’s burgeoning charter school movement" and said the mayor's "immoral policies will limit the futures of yet another generation of African-American youths.”

Jindal’s op-ed refers to de Blasio’s decision in late February to block the space-sharing agreements of nine city schools, including three schools from high-profile charter school operator Success Academy. Some have speculated that de Blasio’s move was part of a personal vendetta against the Success Academy CEO and founder, Eva Moskowitz, although the de Blasio administration approved space-sharing agreements for four other Success schools.

De Blasio has diverted more than $200 million away from charter schools since taking office and has floated the idea of making well-off charter schools pay rent.

While de Blasio has received a significant amount of criticism from charter school leaders and some media outlets (a previous New York Post cover called him a “school bully”), he has said these critiques are ill-informed. In a radio interview earlier this month, he pointed out that he is being compared to former Mayor Michael Bloomberg, who was a strong charter school advocate.

“Of course we’re going to work with the charter schools, and there’s a lot of very good charter schools, but we’re going to treat them with an equality as -- the same way we treat traditional public schools,” said Blasio, according to The New York Times. “We’re not going to favor them the way the Bloomberg administration did.”

Jindal’s op-ed ended with an attack on President Obama and the Department of Justice, whom Jindal has sparred with on the issue of voucher schools. In August, the DOJ filed a lawsuit to partially block the implementation of Louisiana’s voucher program, designed to give low-income children the opportunity to attend private schools.

According to the DOJ’s lawsuit, the program violates previous desegregation orders in more than 30 districts.

In his op-ed, Jindal said the lawsuit “would be funny if it weren’t so sad -- and if the lives of so many young African-American children weren’t at stake.”

Earlier on HuffPost:

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